Having given my opinions on crop conditions currently in WNY in an earlier post, I am adding the following statements form the experts. This information is as published in MPN Now newspapers today.
Farmers went from wishing every day for an end to the rain to wishing every day for it to rain, all in one all-or-nothing growing season.
Experienced farmers know that every year will not be perfect and so plan on summer days like these. But that doesn’t change the fact that working the land has been a challenge, said Jim Ochterski, agricultural program manager for the Cornell Cooperative Extension of Ontario County.
“I’ve not seen a year that has had such poor planting conditions to such poor growing conditions,” Ochterski said.
That’s a sentiment echoed by Mike Lincoln of Linholm Dairy in Bloomfield, who has been working at the farm his parents started since 1997. The rain delayed the crop, and the extended dry spell stunted its growth.
“It’s probably the worst I’ve seen,” said Lincoln, who expects to take a financial hit because of the weather.
Poor conditions have hampered the corn and hay crop at Black Brook Farm in Farmington, said owner Henry Adams, making it among the worst seasons he’s seen in 30 years.
“The last year it was this bad was 1995,” Adams said. “We had corn die before it fully matured, and we’re close to
One crop’s folly is another’s potential bounty. Grapes and apples are doing as well as expected, aided by the heat.
Here’s how the weather is affecting the region’s cash crops:
“Some corn that is supposed to be knee-high by July is not knee-high. Normally, all the corn is at the same height, but we have a wide range of conditions,” Jim Ochterski said. He points out another potential concern: Some ears of corn may not have as many kernels as normal. Corn is resilient, though, Mike Lincoln said.
All things considered, the grape crop is experiencing a normal pattern, Ochterski said. Grapes benefit greatly from sunshine and warmth, but they also suffer with changes in soil condition, such as swamped land in the spring to arid soil today. “Generally, the grapes have been faring as well as expected,” Ochterski said.
No rain, no problem — at least as far as the apple crop is concerned. The sunny summer will produce unusually sweet apples and cider, according to the New York Apple Association.
The size of this year’s New York state apple crop is expected to be at or near last year, at about 30.3 million bushels.
Link to articlehttp://www.mpnnow.com/canandaigua/x1852603601/A-bummer-crop-for-corn-grapes-and-apples-fair