On a clear sky morning driving across the valley my eyes encounter a plume of white smoke drifting on the horizon. I pull my vehicle off Highway 2 and head north, hoping to intersect the plume, which by its color suggests a burning prairie. The blackened ground, low scattered flames and green tinged shrubs confirm my suspicions. I watch the flames slowly make their way across the grass, non-threatening, knowing in a day or two green shoots will rise up out of the ashes. I continue on.
Nearing Crookston I catch the quick movement of a yellow bi-plane, ducking low across the fields. Seems to me too early to be crop dusting, perhaps making practice runs? I watch as the small sky plane takes another pass. Nothing I can see coming off the wings. But growing time is here in the Valley, and I wonder what it will bring in a year of low water, increased acreage under the plow, and climbing fuel prices.
Water is the connection here. The link between plant health and successful crops, human health and strong economies, cheap chemicals and products available to purchase. Water is necessary and yet water, as we know here in the valley, can be destructive, a resource to be controlled. How much do we really understand about water and its connections? Not nearly enough. Think about water today. It deserves to be recognized for the power it holds.
For more information on water check out the links at the top of the page.