Farmers still deal with headaches from heavy rain - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Farmers still deal with headaches from heavy rain

By Christian Jennings - bio | email

THOMASVILLE, GA (WALB) - South Georgia farmers are still facing challenges from heavy rains weeks ago.

They're dealing with higher production costs and reduced yields.

They had to replant many corn, peanut, and cotton crops after rain washed them out or packed down the soil.

Mid-June is late for planting peanuts.

But last month when heavy rain pounded much of south georgia, it was just too much for many crops to handle.

"That 6 inches plus of heavy rain washed away a lot of corn, we had to replant those," said Thomas county extension coordinator Don Clark.

And at the same time, we were trying to plant peanuts and cotton, and those heavy rains caused problems there.

Take this field for example.

"This is a 180 acre irrigated corn field. Of that, we replanted 30 acres," said Clark.

And replanting large quantities of crops, adds costs to production.

"Diesel is expensive. Burned a lot of diesel over a lot of acres. Also the cost of the seed to replant. And we also had to put additional fertilizer down cause the rain washed it away," said Clark.

Late planting can be challenging for the crops. Reducing yield and often times, quality.

"Now we'll have to see what the rest of the growing season brings. What kind of rainfall we get in August and September when plants are maturing," said Clark.

Vegetable crops also took a beating.  But the troubles go far beyond Thomas county, farmers across south georgia worry that because many crops of all kinds were planted late, if un-seasonal cold weather roles in in the fall, it could be detrimental.

Extension agents and farmers say they should have a decent crop of cantaloupes and watermelons that weren't badly affected by the heavy rains.

But the yield could still be a little off.

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