The world’s soil is in trouble, even in the fertile Midwest. Some experts warn that if degradation continues unchecked, topsoil could be gone in 60 years. That has implications for agriculture and the broader environment.
Okay. Political stories often come from the White House and they often take our political correspondents, say, to Iowa. That's where three of them are right now. But not for an election cycle, but actually to cycle. NPR's Don Gonyea, Scott Horsley and Brian Naylor are all on vacation together, pedaling across the state of Iowa, hundreds of miles with thousands of other cyclists. It's an annual summertime ritual known as RAGBRAI.
Paul Horel, 66, left the family farm as soon as he could. Now, though, he appreciates lessons learned as a farm kid.
Paul Horel says his childhood was pretty typical for a kid growing up in the Midwest in the 1950s: he did chores in the morning and evening, spent long summer days playing in the fields, and attended a small country school.
Retirement can be a dirty word for farmers; but aging means they inevitably can do less on their land. Sometimes families anticipate the coming changes and plan for them – but even the most carefully planned transitions can lead to strained relationships.