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Wet weather delays the harvest for some local farmers

More than five inches of rain fell on many fields this week.
Published: Sep. 24, 2021 at 6:23 PM EDT
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - The sunshine was certainly a welcome sight for a lot of people Friday, especially farmers. There are plenty of water-logged fields around the area after the wet week.

“Since the beginning of August, we’ve had almost 14 inches of rain,” says Jeff Creque, a third-generation farmer. “So far this week, we’ve gotten about 5.5 inches of rain here at our farm in Sylvania Township. I heard this morning that out to the west, they got about 7 inches.”

Jeff and his son Tom grow hundreds of acres of corn and soybeans in Ohio and Michigan.

“This was a pretty heavy rain event for September. Normally, we see that kind of weather in October or even November,” says Tom.

Jeff says all the rain has pushed back their harvest by at least a week. “We had just started with beans and had to stop because of the weather. The corn is ready, and it was time to plant wheat. If we don’t get more heavy rain, it will be at least a week before we can even think about getting back in the fields.”

Even if there’s no standing water, Jeff says they can’t always get into the fields. “We can’t go out when it’s muddy because we’ll wreck everything, and then it will be a jungle next spring.”

Other than delaying the harvest, Tom says the water can also usher in diseases. “You can put fungicides on and other things to prevent that, but it’s not a cure-all. And it’s expensive to do.”

Drainage systems do help get a lot of water off the fields. New technology and equipment also help. So Tom says it is far from time to panic.

“Farmers have more equipment, better equipment, and bigger equipment. We can hit the nice day windows, and get more done. So all is not lost. We just have to hurry up and wait for things to dry.”

Jeff says their love of the land far outweighs the frustrations of farming. “There have been a lot of challenges over the years. But we love it, we’re still here.”

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