Then Came The Floods

Deer eating unprotected tree.

The first spring following the fall when we planted the trees, we made our 6 hr trip from our home in IL to Iowa to check on the trees to see how they fared during the winter.

When we pulled up all the tree tubes were looking great. A few were leaning from the strong winter winds, but all were there. None looked like they were damaged from deer and other animals. The trees that were not protected by tree tubes didn’t fare so well. Every one of the trees that were not protected by the tree tubes were eaten completely to the ground or the tops were eaten off. The deer, rabbits, and rodents had dinned on the the little trees all winter. A big percent of the unprotected trees were not going to survive the summer. We had anticipated this from the properties past history, and we were glad the  tree tubes had worked so well and had been worth the investment. We went back to IL thinking we might get lucky with no flooding this year.

Then Came the floods
In the last part of June and the first part of July it started raining in Southern Iowa. They had a two week period were it rained on and off almost every day. The ground was saturated when they had a big storm that dumped 4 inches of  rain. It was some of the worst flooding in South Central Iowa ever. I have two creeks on my property. One on the North boundary line and one one the east boundary line. They meet in the North East corner of my land. Where the two creeks come together to make one it creates like a traffic jam when it floods. When this happens the excess water backs on to my land and floods the bottom section where the trees are planted. It acts like a big bath tub and slowly drains back after only a few hours after the rain stops.

Flooding in Iowa

Then a few days later another 3 inch rain flooded the area again. My land flooded twice in 3 days. A friend of mine who lives by there called me and told me about the flooding and said it was the worst he had seen in his 10 years of living around there. He said it even closed down hwy 65. He tried to go by my property but a small section of gravel road was washed out in front of my land, it didn’t look good. We would have to wait until  after it dries out to see what damage it had done to my trees.

Next post: The Flooding Aftermath

About Gordon Milligan

I am a retired conductor for a commuter railroad in Chicago IL, I now live in and have bought a 40 acre farm in South Central Iowa that I have built from the ground up. My wife and I are trying to raise and grow most of my own food using sustainible and organic methods. I have a blog that journals my journey to becoming a farmer.
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