South Georgia peanut farmers experiencing slower season than normal

The peanut harvest is on the way and South Georgia farmers are having an average crop.
Published: Sep. 29, 2023 at 6:26 PM EDT
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ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - The peanut harvest is on the way and South Georgia farmers are having an average crop.

“The biggest problem that we’re having to deal with right now is Mother Nature has not been good to us,” Scott Montfort, University of Georgia (UGA) State Extension peanut agronomist, said. “You know, as good as we’ve seen in previous years because we started cooling we. That we kind of dried off and had some decent temperatures in the middle of the season, but now we’ve cooled off again and so trying to mature this crop out has been slower than normal.”

A lot of farmers are trying to figure out where to start, and if they can start growing, according to Montfort. The farmers who have started growing so far have had a bit lower grades than what was expected.

“Our yields are off a little bit and so we’re trying to get people. Able to kind of hold up a little bit and let them mature out a little bit longer and hopefully kind of minimize that effect,” he said.

With a little bit of rain in the middle of this week, the ground was very hard when it started out.

“I mean, and the rain was not widespread, at least you know anything above 1/2 inch was not widespread. We got a couple places that had received upwards of an inch or better. But I think it helped more than it hurt,” Montfort said.

The moisture from the rain is needed, especially to dig some of the dry land, according to Montfort.

In the western counties, especially the southwestern counties, the rain is probably a bit too late.

“It helped us get them out of the ground, but it the plants had already started slowing down and stopping and so. I’m not sure that help those, but I think for the most part I I take any moisture right now. As long as it’s not, you know more than an inch or better,” he said.