Damaging floods have recently swept across vast stretches in Nebraska this week. Farmers, rancher and homeowners alike are being negatively impacted. One of the casualties of this flood are the many home and commercial landscapes that have flooded, causing damage that can be realized now and later in the growing season. Nebraska Extension has a resource to assist how to respond to this damage.
Weather Ready Landscapes is a set of eight infographics created by the Nebraska Extension Water Efficiency and Weather Issue Teams to address these extreme weather events that Nebraska experiences each year. These infographics are front/back handouts on various weather events, and how to respond to them. One is the module that contains specific information on flooded landscapes. One side will have “reactive” type answers for the immediate, and “proactive” type suggestions for homeowners to plan In relation to future floods.
The specific infographic to the flooded landscape module to download, print, or email out can be found at https://weather-ready.unl.edu/Flood.pdf for reactive recommendations and proactive suggestions on the topic in the future. For the entire set of all the Weather Ready Landscapes infographics, please view these at https://weather-ready.unl.edu/weather-ready-landscapes for more detailed information.
At this point, the flood water will have to recede before the damage can viewed and respond. Time duration of the flood water, current and temperature will all have an impact regarding damage. These levels will probably vary quite a bit across the impacted areas. The lack of oxygen from the flood water can really impact the survivability of lawn turf and herbaceous
landscape plants that die down after frost, and return in the spring. Trees and shrubs can also be impacted, but the true level of damage may not be realized immediately after the water has receded. It would not be surprising to see delayed damage later on in the year.
For now, homeowners will be in “wait and see” mode for the flood water to recede and the damage to present itself. Of course, this can be very frustrating to homeowners since many want to do “something” right away.
If anyone has any questions about flood damaged landscapes, please contact your local Nebraska Extension Office, or contact me by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or by calling my office at (308) 696-6781. If the call transfers to voicemail, please leave a message as these will be transferred to me while I am out of the office responding to other calls.
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David Lott is the Horticulture Extension Educator with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension in North Platte, Nebraska.