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Crops affected by wet weather

TOWN OF CHENANGO (WBNG) — While the sun peaked out a bit on Wednesday, the recent wet weather has been a hassle for farmers.

With spring in full swing and June just around the corner, many are excited for strawberry season.

“It’s the first crop we usually have. People are excited that spring starts so they want to come out and pick strawberries,” said co-owner of Apple Hills, David Johnson.

But it’s one crop Apple Hills won’t have this year.

“Instead of spending a lot of time on my strawberries, we decided not to have strawberries available for the public this year because it’s just in tough shape,” said Johnson.

He says it’s all thanks to the wet weather.

“Lots of rain since last July. Last fall we were wet, wet, wet, and I knew our strawberries were just weak because they were underwater they were drowning. So I knew that we wouldn’t have much of a crop this year,” said Johnson.

Strawberries grow close to the ground, which makes rain a bigger issue.

While there won’t be any strawberries at Apple Hills, there’s still some hope for the apples. The apple blossoms are currently in their pollinating stage, but the weather is affecting that as well.

“It’s been lousy weather. It’s been wet and foggy and bees don’t fly when it’s that type of weather. It’s sunny today we may have a few hours of good pollination but it’s been crummy weather for the bees,” said Johnson.

While Johnson says it’s frustrating to deal with the weather, he knows there’s not much that can be done.

“It’s a big concern because that’s how we make our living. If we don’t have a decent crop, there’s no income for that year,” he said. “Every year there’s always a challenge, but that’s just a farmer’s life.”

Blueberries will be the first crop available to pick at Apple Hills, right after the fourth of July.

Annie Flaherty

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