Drought has Farmers Worrying about Crops


POSTED: Friday, May 6, 2011 - 5:02pm

UPDATED: Friday, May 6, 2011 - 5:49pm

Guadalupe Ramirez has been growing and selling pecans for 10 years.

But, without any rain he may not have much of a crop this year.

"That's our livelihood. We depend on the nuts that we harvest for selling at the store and of course customers. So yeah, it's our livelihood," Ramirez said.

Pecan farmers need rain consistently throughout the year and the next few months are the most important for the nuts.

"Right now is crucial because they're developing. The tree will know if there is enough nutrients and water and if not then they'll start dropping . It regulates itself. If there isn't enough nutrients and water it'll drop the nuts," Ramirez said.

It's been three months since it's rained and Guadalupe Ramirez can only sit and wait.

"We're worried throughout the year. It just depends on if we get any rain or not. We're just waiting to see. Everyday we just hope we get some rain," Ramirez said.

The dry spell could actually damage pecan trees and hurt next years crop too.
And if showers don't come in consistently until August, trees will drop the nuts which means less product to sell.

"If it gets any hotter and we don't get any rain then it'll probably be dropping the fruit, the nuts and then we'll see the total effects later on," Ramirez said.

Some rain will help, but the damage won't be known until December when it's time to harvest.

That's when Ramirez says he'll know if the pecans that do make it will be good enough to sell.

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