Impact of hot, dry weather being felt by local farmers
Published Tuesday, July 3, 2012 5:54PM EDT
Last Updated Tuesday, July 3, 2012 6:47PM EDT
Farmers are hoping for more rain as some crops are starting to show stunted and patchy growth due to all the hot, dry weather.
Craig Martin of Cribit Seeds and Farm says “We need a regular dose, calm, gentle one to two inches of rain fairly regularly here for the next little while.”
The lack of rain comes after a spring that wasn’t what anyone expected and wheat in particular is having a hard time.
“Our seed beds were not quite as moist as we would have liked to seen crops going in and they dried out quickly,” Martin adds.
A short, sharp rain isn’t going to help.
While some crops like corn are actually doing well, that’s because of drought-resistant strains that have been developed over the last 20 years.
At Mosborough Country Market in Guelph, Matthew Oxley says some items were on the shelves up to three weeks earlier than usual this year.
“Things like strawberries, the season’s just about over for field berries and just going into July it’s a little bit early, and we’ve got other things like beans now.”
Martin says it will ultimately be the consumers who pay the price for the impact of the weather on the crops.
“We’ve seen a fair bit of price appreciation on the new crop which is the crop to be harvested this fall.”
And that could extend into the following year’s crops if there isn’t a break from the dry weather soon.
“All those corn and bean crops are hitting the reproductive stages,” Martin says, “and that’s where we don’t want to see a lot of stress on them.”
The only stress relief for the crops is a weekly rainfall.
The only upside to the dry weather is that sweet corn will likely be on your plate sooner than expected.
A cornfield is seen in southern Ontario on Tuesday, July 3, 2012.
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1 °CLight rain