The photo below is of a piece of land that my father once owned. It is now overgrown with brush and trees, but when my father owned the farm it was a fertile field where corn was planted or maybe soybeans. This is what has happened to a lot of farms that the government got their hands on in this area.
This photo is taken from a parking lot where people who want to hunt can park. There are two fields in this area of the farm, one on each side of the highway, they both look much the same now...overgrown with trees, growing right up to the highway.
My father sold his 550 acre farm when he reached retirement age to a family from out of state. They had a government loan (not sure what it was called then) to buy it and began building more grain bins and doing things that were too expensive right from the beginning and without a lot of farm knowledge (at least for this area). It soon became apparent that they might lose the farm. And sure enough, when they couldn't make their payments, they were foreclosed on. The farm, at least a good part of it, was turned over to the Conservation Dept. They let the land lay idle and trees and brush take over and this supposedly makes for good hunting. (I've seen the trees so thick that I doubt a very big deer could run through it, but that is just my disgruntled opinion.) A couple did get to buy part of the farm, after much legal hassle ensued, and still lives there today. The part that the Conservation Dept. has taken over is still growing trees and brush.
The photo below is what the fields used to look like when they were planted in soybeans. The photo really doesn't do justice to the depth or length of the field, but you get the idea of what it looked like before. We had wooded areas too, some with a creek running through.
I never have understood why the government will take a good farm and just let it lay idle. This was a wonderful farm that raised a lot of crops and livestock. It hasn't made a dime for the government just laying idle like this. What a waste!
And, yes, it makes me a bit angry to think of the waste...the money that could have been made from the land now overgrown, the food that could have been raised to feed hungry people. I really think sometimes that the people in Washington just don't have a clue.
I am so glad the couple that fought hard to buy part of the farm got to do so. I have many special memories of growing up on that farm that I'll be sharing here in my blog from time to time.
One of those memories is of my years in a one room school house. That school house was on a few acres just next to our family's farm, so I didn't have far to go. I'll be sharing those memories soon.
Until next time...