A Not-So-Fantastical Plan To Save California From Drought With Cacti

Imagine the Central Valley of California not as a patchwork of drought-vulnerable crops but as a network of farms that use almost no water. Not only that, these farms can also filter existing water while providing acres of food for Californians. Imagine that thirsty alfalfa no longer reigns: Cactus is king.
»9/25/15 5:20pm9/25/15 5:20pm

How Low-Tech Farming Innovation Can Make African Farmers Climate-Resilient

Scientists, politicians and the Pope are not the only ones calling for action on climate change these days. Farmers are observing changes in rainfall, temperature and other patterns in weather that have spurred them into shifting their farming methods. In fact, while climate change is not a source of scientific… »9/22/15 3:30am9/22/15 3:30am

You Can Still Find Groundwater in California, But It'll Cost You

So your taps have run dry in the drought and you desperately need more water for your family. Why not just dig another well? For starters, the cost of digging a well might be more than you paid for your house. And then there’s another issue: No matter how deep you dig, someone with more money is gonna dig one deeper… »7/24/15 7:40pm7/24/15 7:40pm

Soil Sensors Can Cut Farms’ Water Use By a Quarter During Drought

We’ve extensively covered California’s drought, in which farming is playing a key role. While there’s no easy answer about how to restrict agricultural water use, a new startup wants to help farmers all over the country conserve valuable H20 using smart sensors that dictate where—and when—to water their crops. »6/22/15 3:10pm6/22/15 3:10pm

Farmers Are Pumping So Much Groundwater It's Making California Sink

What happens when your water supply runs dry? You go underground. In some parts of California, drought-plagued farmers are digging groundwater wells that plunge deeper and deeper into the earth, siphoning away the water of their neighbors, and causing the ground to collapse—potentially destroying the soil for good. »6/05/15 7:30pm6/05/15 7:30pm

Government-Subsidized Cotton Farms Are Sucking the Colorado River Dry

Not too many drought stories have focused on cotton. As one of the thirstiest crops, it was long abandoned by many farmers in the regions hardest hit by unprecedented water scarcity. Except for one part of Arizona, where cotton blooms defiantly, even today. Because here, the more cotton fails, the more the US pays… »5/27/15 8:20pm5/27/15 8:20pm