Weather causes problems for peanut farmers

Weather causes problems for peanut farmers

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - South Georgia peanut farmers got a late start planting this year because of a wet early spring.

Now dry weather is the problem.

WALB News Ten's Shannon Wiggins spoke to a Lee County farmer.

How is the weather affecting him?

It's threatening to put him behind. So far, about half of this year's peanut crop is in the ground. That's about average for this time of year, but farmers need some rain.

Workers at Georgia Farm Services are putting in overtime at this 700 acre field to catch up on a delayed start to the planting season caused by wet weather.

" A lot of heavy rainfall early in the season made it hard for producers to get into the field," said Jesse Luke- Farm Manager.

Now farmers are wishing they had more rain.

"Easily we could use an inch of rain right now no problem," said Jesse Luke.

Much of South Georgia has gotten less than an inch of rain all month. Dry conditions have put a stop to nearly all planting in fields that aren't irrigated.

" Fortunately some of our farms have irrigations on them, but the dry land fields and the dry land crops that we do have are struggling to be able to germinate and to be able to sprout," said Jesse Luke, Farm Manager.

Fifty percent of the crop is now planted in the state. That's up from just 28 percent last week. Luke said his planters had to put in longer hours of work this month to get back on track.

"That comes from the effect of the early rainfall earlier in the season. It's pushed us now to have to work twice as hard to get the crop in the same amount of time."

Luke said it's ideal to have 100 percent of the crop planted by the middle of May, but with time constantly running he's now hoping to be finished planting by the end of this month.

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