Mid-March freeze worries farmers - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Mid-March freeze worries farmers

CAMILLA, GA (WALB) -

This late cold snap has not been good for farmers. Millions of dollars of crops like strawberry's peaches, blueberries extremely vulnerable in this frigid air.

In Mitchell County, where It got down to 28 degrees, one farmer is taking action to save his blueberry crop.

Yesterday, farmers were scrambling to prepare for this morning's bitter cold. WALB News 10 caught up with farmer and agriculture consultant Doyle Singleton.

He says it's this time of year when blueberries and sweet corn farmers are getting ready for harvest and he's worried that the cold could destroy those crops, making a huge impact on the local economy. Yesterday, the farmer sprayed them the crops with fertilizers to give them more protein, in hopes it will help them withstand the cold.

Doyle is trying mechanisms you don't see often; starting with old hay.  The idea is to take bales of hay and spread them out all around the blueberry field.  Then farmers are going to light them on fire and fly their planes around the fields, pushing the heat towards the crop. 

Singleton says he doesn't know if it'll work, but he's going to at least try. "It's very, very important that we do all that we can and look it's only up to the good Lord as far as you know it's in his hands."

And no doubt that farmers all over our region are praying for good news this morning. The Georgia blueberry commission said overall blueberry farmers could see a 40 percent loss because of the freezing temperatures. 

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