Some Niagara farmers facing hard times ahead

CKTB - NEWS - Wet Fields

Farmers in Niagara need some help from mother nature as they face potentially hard times ahead.

The wet start to the season has resulted in planting delays according Clark Agri Service Agronomy Manager Jerry Winnicki. "We're probably going to end up with 25% of the intended acres not planted. Friday is the deadline for your crop insurance coverage and after Friday anything you put in the ground, you're planting on your own. We've lost about a third of the growing season so there's still a lot of risk involved in what is planted, whether it will mature or not. We always have to be concerned about a frost in September."

Winnicki says the hardest hit portions of the region are the low banks area of Wainfleet, Stevensville, Fort Erie, and Pelham.

"There's some people who have very, very little of their acreage in the ground. It just means hardships for the next 12 to 18 months; you've got bills to pay, living expenses, you've paid rent for some of this land, you've got machinery costs. It's going to create some hardship for some area farmers."

He says by planting now instead of in May, some farmers will lose 35 - 40% of their yield.

Meanwhile the recent warm and dry weather has helped some parts of the peninsula.