Frosts are expensive for local farmers


(QUEEN CITY NEWS) – The cold weather of Saturday night was more than just an inconvenience to many people. For local farmers, 20-degree temperatures were expensive.

Under a sea of ​​white blankets on Rich Hill farms in Lancaster County, Carlamina, sit 20,000 strawberries. 30% of them died from frost over the weekend. For farmers who are counting on a good harvest to make a living, this is a devastating loss.

“This is the first year we’ve seen such cold temperatures at this stage with strawberries since the heat is so early,” said Rachel Hovis of Rich Hill Farms. “It’s devastating when you know it’s going to affect you so much.”

Fortunately, most of their colors have survived. But 150 gallons of strawberries, which did not, significantly roll them back.

“It didn’t hurt the plants, so the plants will continue to harvest. It will be just a delayed start when we start selecting, ”said Hannah Denkins, Hovis’ sister.

Although the loss hurts, the family is counting on a blessing, saying the frosts were probably much worse for farmers growing different crops.

“Strawberries are not like peach trees. Peach trees bloom right away, so it will really hurt the peach farmers, ”Denkins said.

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Hovis and Denkins spent Sunday morning patrolling their fields. A dark plaque means that the fruit has been damaged in the cold and needs to be collected so that new flowers can grow in its place. Bright green flowers have survived.

“When you hear about it, it’s stifling because you’ve put in so much work,” Hovis said. “Hopefully, if the temperature rises again, flowering will still be there.”

Frosts are expensive for local farmers

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