The dog days of August turned into the muddy days of August. Usually you get a few steamy days in a row with a shower or two in between but this August was very trying on the nerves. It has been a while since we have experienced this type of heat, humidity and rain consecutive week after week. We received over 14 inches of rain in some of our fields within a two week period and then a couple of inches since then.
Heat and humidity is one thing, but with all the rain it wreaks havoc on all of the crops. What does it cause? Rust in the sweet corn, powdery mildew in the cucumbers, phytophthora in many vine crops, peppers, etc. Our last planting of cucumbers was only picked one time, half was flooded out and the rest molded up with disease. Tough month that will be remembered for a long time and the repercussions tend to last many years which will change our rotation process when we go to plant in the years to come. What processes are we going to use? As soon as it dries up we will till up our problem spots and get them seeded down into a cover crop to help build the soil fertility up and get it back into growing shape. Soil compaction becomes a big issue while we are harvesting when it is so wet. We cannot pick and choose when we will harvest, we harvest when it has to be done. This being said we are creating soil compaction issues everywhere we drive and this will have to be fixed sooner rather than later.
All said and done we will be buying a cheap scotch (Scorsby) this year instead of a Balvenie 12 year old.
P.S. We will start harvesting pumpkins and fall items starting next week so get out there and support your local farmer.