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The United States Grows
(1865-1900)

Growing Wheat on the Great Plains



Growing Wheat on the Great Plains
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 5 to 7
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   5.31

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    reaper, immigrate, resistant, breadbasket, provided, brittle, bushels, semi, freedom, harvest, earth, date, however, early, appear, religious
     content words:    Now Wheat, Then It, Native Americans, Russian Mennonites, American Midwest, Great Plains, Turkey Red Wheat, Red Wheat, In Kansas


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Growing Wheat on the Great Plains
By Sharon Fabian
  

1     Wheat farmers in Kansas harvest hundreds of millions of bushels of wheat each year. One huge combine can harvest 1,000 bushels in just one hour. That's enough to bake 73,000 loaves of bread! The wheat is stored in giant grain elevators, nicknamed prairie skyscrapers, and then shipped out by railroad or semi truck.
 
2     It wasn't always like that. The Native Americans didn't grow wheat. They grew corn. The early settlers tried to grow wheat sometimes, mostly as an experiment, but with little success. The prairie soil was too hard. There wasn't enough rain. High winds and dust storms made wheat farming even more difficult.
 
3     Then, in the early 1870s, Russian Mennonites began to immigrate to the American Midwest. The Mennonites were a religious group who came to America for religious freedom and freedom to live the way they wanted. Back in Russia, they had lived on the steppes, flat land similar to the Great Plains. There, they had grown winter wheat. When they came to America, each family brought a trunk full of wheat seeds with them. This winter wheat had the colorful name of Turkey Red Wheat.

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The United States Grows
(1865-1900)

             The United States Grows
(1865-1900)



United States
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(1865-1900)
 
 
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