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USA - Flooding impacts crops, causes delays in growth

Farmers say all of the rain the last few weeks has made it difficult for farmers to stay on schedule. They say muddy conditions and crop loss due to flooding mean there could be a delay for when certain produce is available.

Drew Alexander, a farmer from Broadway, says inches of standing water killed his spinach crop, and if the ground doesn’t dry out fast enough, it could also cause root crops, like potatoes, to start rotting.

He says losing crops creates a lot of extra work because farmers have to replant them, and it also results in profit loss. It could also take longer for some crops to show up at your local farmers market. He says the weather has caused a major delay in when some crops can be planted.

“Last week, I couldn’t even get into some of my plots because the mud was so bad that it would just swallow my feet,” Alexander said. “So if it’s that bad you can’t really do anything.”

The constant wet conditions also caused a lot of weeds to grow, and Alexander says it’s impossible to keep up with. Between replanting and weeding, he says the flooding causes a lot of extra work.

“Well it certainly creates a lot more work,” he said. “You have to go back and replant. And with the weed issue, its hard to cultivate to keep the weeds out because it stays wet all the time so they continue to grow. So that’s a lot more labor.”

Alexander said there was a positive impact from the rain. It kept the soil cooler for longer than usual, allowing him to grow cold weather crops like broccoli and cabbage longer.

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