Farmers watching Dorian’s track closely, as storm could have effect on crops

Farmers watching Dorian’s track closely, as storm could have effect on crops

EVANS COUNTY, Ga. (WTOC) - Farmers are watching Hurricane Dorian’s track very closely. Many of them have crops in the field that could benefit from showers, but could be wiped out by anything stronger.

The last thing South Georgia cotton farmers want to see is a full scale hurricane making a beeline for this area, but a few inches of rain in late August might be just what the doctor ordered.

Sunny skies held over the fields in Evans County on Thursday. Extension agent Ross Greene says he sees cotton plants generating bolls, and some have started to open. The crop still needs some rain to get it to the final stage before harvest.

“A moderate amount of rain would be good, but excessive rain and some heavy winds, we could definitely have some damage to this crop,” Greene said.

He and local farmers worry more about the winds from a hurricane than they do the rainfall. The timing is also good. In a few weeks, they’ll spray fields to kill off the foliage and get cotton ready to harvest. That will make the plants even more vulnerable.

“Cotton with some leaves on it tends to withstand the winds better,” Greene said.

He says a few hundred miles difference in Dorian’s path could be a difference in helping the crop finish, and crushing it before farmers can get it out of the field.

Ross says farmers would rather see the rains of a hurricane come and go now rather than later.

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