Drought forces Nebraska landscaping business to liquidate all plant materials

EAGLE, Neb. (KLKN) – Landmark Landscapes is feeling the devastating impact Nebraska’s months-long drought has had on water supply.

The water supply has gotten so low, the president of the company is trying to sell all of the plants at an extreme discount, before they run out of water completely.

“Potentially, if we truly lose water, a lot of this stuff is just going to perish,” said president of the business Mark Charipar. “It won’t put us under, but it’s certainly going to set us back, without a doubt.”

The company has been using a retention pond as its nursery’s water supply for several years. It’s been trying to reuse and conserve as much water as possible, but since there’s been little rain, the pond isn’t enough to keep all the plants alive.

There’s a tiny trickle of water coming in from the creek nearby, but if that stops, the pond will have to be drained, leaving the nursery without water.

“We’ve done an excellent job of utilizing, reusing and conserving water because we still have water after 4½ months,” Mark Charipar said. “What’s happening, though, is rural water is denying us access to a water hookup 30 feet away.”

Charipar says the reason Landmark Landscapes is being denied access to the water is because officials said it would “look bad” to have a nursery hooked into the water line.

But he doesn’t want to use the water line for the nursery. He wants to hook it up to his house, diverting his water well to the nursery.

“People need to understand that water is precious,” Charipar said. “There’s a lot of us out there trying to survive with what little water that’s accessible to us.

On Monday, officials from Cass County Rural Water said Landmark was denied access because of water shortages in the state.

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