Weather takes its toll on New England growers


17 August 2023
Rows of potatoes drowned by persistent heavy rain.

NEW England has been subject to unusual and inconsistent weather and potato growers are feeling the after effects.

To many the weather, marked most notably by heavy, persistent rain, may seem a welcome change in 2023 after 2022 saw the worst drought the region had experienced in years but for local growers, who are always in need of water for their crops, the rain and inconsistent weather posed unique challenges this year, and in many cases resulted in significant crop losses.

Dave Dumaresq, who runs Farmer Dave’s in Dracut, Tewksbury and Westford, said in an interview with The Sun: “Last year was our worst drought in about 20 years, and that drought continued well into this spring.” 

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Dave and his team of employees began irrigating in April and May to get them to germinate. Then the rains arrived in bulk.

In lower-lying parts of his fields, rows of potatoes have been drowned. In just one potato field in Dracut, Dumaresq estimated that he will lose about 30,000 pounds of yield from the crops and land area lost due to pooling water.

“We lose potatoes because it all pools up and in general we were a little delayed on some of our harvests due to the cooler, cloudy weather,” he said.

Source: The Sun

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