‘We can’t get anything done’: Mississippi farmers battling yet another climate crisis – WLBT

HINDS/WARREN CO., Miss. (WLBT) – Another wave of weather has Mississippi farmers once again battling to keep their crops alive.
Last year, farmers were hit hard by a severe drought, which 3 On Your Side reported multiple times.
This year, the problem is too much rain, which is oversaturating farmland and killing crops before they can even grow.
“Nobody can string the stretch of weather together to get something done,” said Scott Canada, a farmer in Edwards.
Canada says his rain gauge has collected over 32 inches of rainfall since the month of March, and that the yearly average for his farm is 57 inches.
He’s now struggling with the issues of flooded crops, overgrown weeds, and not being able to get out in the field to spray fertilizer.
“We can’t just get in the field to get anything done,” he said.
Until the rain moves out for a decent period of time, Canada believes he won’t be able to get much accomplished ahead of the summer months.
“When you do get something done, you get a big three-inch rain two days later,” he said. “And you get to go back and do it again.”
A similar situation is happening to Lonnie Fortner, a farmer in Vicksburg.
“The biggest issue we’re having right now is just getting the actual farming part of this crop year going,” he said.
Fortner says the recent downpours have prevented him from planting cotton on time, as well as all the other issues mentioned by Canada.
He’s now being forced to delay his regular planting schedule until something changes.
“We’re still not through planting peanuts, and this is new territory for me,” he said. “I’ve never planted peanuts in June. So you know, we’ll have to finish in June if we continue with peanuts.”
Another issue that’s in the hands of Mother Nature is whether farmers will have enough time for their hay to dry out after it is cut.
If you recall from last year’s drought, farmers had to begin feeding cattle hay as soon as September due to the brutal heat leading to a quick shortage.
“The longer this thing, this period of weather pattern we’re in continues, it’s going to it’s going to continue to compound and the problem moving forward,” he said.
Both farmers say the impact of all this rain won’t be known until it comes time for them to harvest later this year.
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