Field-corn stalks and leaves are normally brown and dry come harvest time, but these plants a mile and a half north of my Illinois home are withered, stunted, and black and brown. The exposed yellow cob of corn doesn't look too bad compared to the many more shrunken, ill-formed cobs. The worst drought since the 1950s – coupled with non-stop, record-setting heat – ruined what was expected to be a good corn crop this year. As I wrote during this past summer, the 2012 growing-season conditions were devastating to our farmers. And our prayers are still with them – for healthier soybeans and better times ahead.
T.E. Griggs is a writer, editor and photographer and a retired U.S. Marine.