Farmers pray for rain

PRAYING FOR RAIN: Canola famer Ryan Morey says rainfall will determine whether this year’s bumper canola crop will dry out or yield well. Picture: Nicole BarlowCANOLA farmer Ryan Morey is praying for rain.

If the sun keeps shining until harvest, the bright, healthy canola crop will be dried out to a shrivel.

At the beginning of the season, farmers were thrilled with the bumper crop, but a lack of rain and early dry heat has wiped the smile off farmers’ faces.

“It’s drying out,” Mr Morey, from Homeview Farms, said.

“They started off really well, and then when the rain stopped it slowed it down.”

Mr Morey farms 7500 hectares of mixed crops.

Around one third of that is canola.

He said most farmers were fearful of the dry weather.

“If it doesn’t rain we’ll harvest early,” he said.

“We’ll have less yield though.”

The September Seasonal Conditions report, released by the department of primary industries, predicts grim conditions this spring.

Seasonal conditions co-ordinator Ian McGowen said some crops in southern and central states had already suffered from a lack of moisture stress caused by dry conditions and severe frosts.

“Severe frosts in late July to early August caused damage to crops including wheat, lupins and canola, across southern and central NSW,” Mr McGowen said.

“All areas need good rainfall in September, to provide moisture for grain filling, promote pasture growth, improve soil moisture profiles and to replenish stock water supplies ahead of summer.”

Mr Morey said there was still a demand for canola, but yield would be determined by rainfall.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.