NPR

Flooding And Rising Seas Threaten America's Oldest Farmland

Some of the oldest farmland in America is on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. But as sea levels rise, saltwater is killing crops and threatening a way of life.
Bob Fitzgerald stands in a spot where frequent floods have killed 15 acres of soybean crops. Behind him is a row of phragmites, an invasive plant common in wetlands. Source: Jennifer Ludden

Bob Fitzgerald lives on the edge of a flat field that's just a few feet above sea level. It's the same spot on Maryland's Eastern Shore where his ancestors settled before the U.S. became a country.

"The land grant came into the family in 1666," he says.

When he was a child his parents grew tomatoes, cucumbers and string beans. Now nearing 80, Fitzgerald plants corn and soybeans

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