Weekend rains vital for crops

Published 12:03 am Wednesday, June 13, 2012


The recent rains have been a “Godsend” to local farmers, officials said Tuesday.

“The slow stuff is what we really need,” said county extension agent and farmer Chuck Simon. “The heavy stuff has the potential to cause some damages, but I haven’t heard of any damages.”

Simon said he hopes that some of the ponds around the county will fill up.

“We really need that,” he said.

Additionally, the rains will help with the next round of hay cutting, which is a welcome relief for farmers, who were in dire straits this time last year, Simon said.

Covington County has some 30,000 acres of pasture in the county.

Last year, without rain, hay crops were virtually non-existent and farmers were forced to use hay stockpiled for the winter to feed cows during June.

“It will definitely help with cutting hay, corn, cotton – really all the crops,” Simon said. “Oh, and the pecans.”

Simon said he could tell how much rain was really needed by how fast it was absorbed into the ground.

In the first 12 days of June, the Choctawhatchee Pea River Watershed Management Authority records indicate that 5.52 inches have fallen at the Yellow River monitor site, and 5 inches of that have fallen in the last three days, and 3.16 inches in the past two days.

In 2011, the site only collected 4.92 inches of rain for the entire month, and in 2010, 3.92 inches.