Welcome to Kansas, the Sunflower State and heart of America’s breadbasket. This state is renowned for glorious prairies, rich soil, and beautiful skies. It’s a state full of sturdy, innovative people who are hardworking and productive. It’s a place “where the buffalo roam, where the deer and the antelope play,” as the words to Kansas’s state song so famously put it. Let’s take a brief look at the highlights of the state of Kansas for those who are looking to buy land in the state. We’ll consider the agriculture, industry, and transportation advantages of Kansas.
Agriculture is a major strength for Kansas. Even way back in 1888, the Topeka Daily Capital claimed, “In wheat, Kansas can beat the world.”(1) True to its nickname as the nation’s breadbasket, Kansas is the state that produces the most wheat in the United States. From 1992 to 2019*, Kansas produced a total of 9.89 billion bushels of wheat, narrowly outranking North Dakota, with 8.87 billion bushels in the same time period. With wheat holding such importance, you’d think it was also the number one cash crop in Kansas. However, in 2017, the market value of wheat sold in Kansas was $1.17 billion, while the market value of corn sold was $2.3 billion, and the market value of cattle sold was $10.9 billion. So while Kansas is outranking the rest of the US in wheat, you can’t think exclusively of wheat when you think of Kansas. Kansas is a very versatile state that offers you the ability to pursue numerous different types of agriculture.
Kansas industry is also a growing strength for the state. Industries in Kansas include manufacturing, bioscience, wind energy, professional services, renewable fuels and bioenergy. In 1986, the Kansas Legislature took a hard look at the factors that would be required to stimulate economic development in Kansas. The result of their research was some policy changes in the areas of business taxes and other factors to make Kansas a more attractive state. Back then, bioscience and biotechnology was in its infancy, but now these industries enjoy robust growth and great profits in Kansas, thanks to close proximity to the land where many of these crops are grown.
Transportation is also a key advantage in Kansas, as the state is located near the middle of the nation at the intersection of Interstates 70 and 35. This allows items produced in Kansas to reach the rest of the nation in a timely and efficient way. Highways, rail service, and local and international airports help Kansas to be a destination that’s easy to reach and easy to ship from.
Now that you know a little bit about Kansas, why not check out some of the Kansas listings at American Land Brokers? Also, please stay tuned for further developments and opportunities to learn about this magnificent state. If you need personalized service in the meantime as you’re searching for Kansas land, please call Mark Van Houten at (913) 594-1303 to discuss your Kansas real estate needs.
*The total amount of years for which the USDA Small Grains Report has stats online
If you’re looking for agricultural land in Kansas, but don’t know what parts of the state might be best suited to you, this article is for you. You may think of Kansas exclusively as a flat prairie state with golden wheat swaying gently in the breeze, but the land in the state actually varies quite a bit from region to region. In fact, Kansas has eleven distinct regions, all of which have their own unique beauty and their distinct strengths and weaknesses when it comes to agriculture. For the purposes of this article, we will divide the state roughly in thirds and discuss the regions that exist in each third.
Western Kansas is dominated by High Plains land with a narrow band of Arkansas River Lowlands. These lowlands follow the course of the Arkansas River, which flows through the state from west to east. Both of these regions produce strong yields in wheat, corn, sorghum, and cattle.
The High Plains counties of Kansas offer exceptional production, with average incomes per farm that are approximately triple the Kansas average across the region.
In the Arkansas River Lowlands, the strong production of the High Plains land is combined with greater opportunities for irrigation, leading to increased ability to grow water-intensive crops such as corn.
Six regions comprise the middle third of Kansas, two of which are High Plains and Arkansas River Lowlands (already mentioned above). The other four are the Wellington-McPherson Lowlands, the Smoky Hills, the Flint Hills, and the Red Hills. There is a fair amount of variety in what these different types of land can produce. The biggest region is the Smoky Hills, which is especially strong in the production of wheat, oats, and sorghum. The most productive regions are the Flint Hills (most notably Butler county, with strong yields in cattle, corn, and soybeans) and the Wellington-McPherson Lowlands, especially in Sumner County.
Eastern Kansas is characterized by smaller farms and more diverse options of what your land can produce. A major benefit you should note as you evaluate Eastern Kansas is that the state enjoys more rainfall the further east you go.
The northeastern region of Kansas is called the Glaciated Region. The southeastern region of Kansas consists mostly of a type of land called Osage Cuestas, interrupted briefly by a small fingerlike projection of the Chautauqua Hills, a narrow band of Cherokee Lowlands that crosses through four counties in the southeast corner of the state, and a tiny corner of Ozark Plateau land in the extreme southeast corner of the state.
In addition to the normal crops and livestock, Eastern Kansas offers the opportunity to grow orchards, berries, Christmas trees, and even cotton.
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