Recent rain impacting local crops, lawn services

Published: Sep. 21, 2021 at 5:43 PM CDT
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AUTAUGA COUNTY, Ala. (WSFA) - What a year it’s been for rain, but a big break in the weather is on the way and it’s not just farmers who are glad it’s over for a while.

No sound is more pleasing to hear for Steve Moore as he cranked up his powerful riding lawnmower for another day in the yard, a customer’s yard in Prattville. Moore says the September rains have put him behind by four days. No cuttings means no money.

“Yes, without a doubt. I thought last year was bad, but this year has really been a stumble for us,” said Moore, owner of Moore’s Lawn Service. He cuts 90 to 95 yards per week during peak season.

Based on rain measurements at the Montgomery airport, the amount so far for September is 2 inches more compared to last September. And it’s more than 6 inches overall so far for the year. If you were to combine the months of June through September so far, Alabama is more than 8 inches above normal.

“I’ve got some very good customers, and they’ve been very patient with me,” Moore said, who isn’t alone.

While the excessive rains haven’t caused major problems for row crop farmers, their harvest has been delayed.

“We’ve seen through the crop progress report that this time last year we were at 70% and currently we’re at 42% harvested, so we’re definitely slowed that progress a little bit in harvesting,” said Carla Hornady, ALFA’s director of cotton, soybeans, wheat and grains.

Moore is catching up and row crop farmers are simply waiting for drier days, but we have to remember they’re not necessarily out of the woods just yet; the hurricane season is still with us all the way to Nov. 30.

Much like farmers, Moore often uses rainy days to do equipment maintenance, knowing that nature will always have its way.

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