NEW ORLEANS — The U.S. Department of Agriculture has declared a natural disaster involving 35 Louisiana parishes and eight counties in three neighboring states because of rain, floods, high winds and hail from April 27 through June 26.

It means farmers and ranchers can apply for low-interest loans to help them recover from severe damage.

USDA said Wednesday that 12 parishes are primary disaster areas, and the rest are adjacent.

The primary disaster area covers Avoyelles, Bossier, Caddo, East Feliciana, Franklin, Grant, Iberville, Natchitoches, Pointe Coupee, Rapides, Red River and West Baton Rouge parishes.

Adjacent parishes are Allen, Ascension, Assumption, Bienville, Caldwell, Catahoula, Concordia, De Soto, East Baton Rouge, Evangeline, Iberia, La Salle, Madison, Richland, Sabine, St. Helena, St. Landry, St. Martin, Tensas, Vernon, Webster, West Feliciana and Winn.

Adjacent counties are Lafayette and Miller in Arkansas; Amite and Wilkinson in Mississippi; and Cass, Harrison, Marion and Panola in Texas.