With the price of farmland at record levels across the Corn Belt, many farmers have been renting acres to plant. Now,Â with the price of corn and soybeans in freefall, farmers that depend on renting risk big losses if theyâ€™re unable to negotiate lower rents.
A new report out Tuesday shows millions of wetland acresÂ and highly erodible grassland and prairie are being plowed under and planted into row crops. This in turn causes intense soil erosion especially in a wet spring like this year. The four year, multi state study was conducted by Environmental Working Group. http://www.ewg.org/research/going-going-gone.
Lindsey Price and father Bob Price look out on the land of their Gracie Creek Ranch near Burwell, in central Nebraska.The Price family recently sold the largest conservation easement in Nebraska history, covering about 40 square miles.
Along the winding road to and through Grace Creek Ranch, a 25,537-acre yearling cattle ranch in central Nebraska, there are no houses in sight â€“ no buildings, for that matter. Just acres and acres of gold and amber grass, punctuated by patches of sand and lines of barbed wire fence.
And thatâ€™s the way the owners of Gracie Creek Ranch want it to stay.Â Lindsey Price, a fourth-generation rancher, her brother Aaron and their father Bob recently sold the largest conservation easement in Nebraska history, covering about 40 square miles.
Howard Audsley has been driving through Missouri for the past 30 years to assess the value of farmland. Barreling down the flat roads of Saline County on a recent day, he stopped his truck at a 160-acre tract of newly tilled black land. The land sold in February for $10,700 per acre, double what it would have gone for five years ago.
Heading out into the field, Audsley picked up a clod of the dirt that makes this pocket of land some of the priciest in the state.