Farmers Face New Crop Challenges

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FULTON - In contrast to last year's extreme drought, this year, the majority of Missouri is not experiencing any drought conditions. While that may sound good, farmers face a new problem-the soil is too moist.

Lots of snow, rain, and cold temperatures this year have made it difficult for farmers to plant some of their most popular crops like sweet corn and pumpkins. 

Despite the problems with production, Dennis Schwede, a farmer at Schwede Farms, said attendance at farmers markets has, "been really good." Though consumers want more types of produce, and so far this year, the weather has made crop production tough, they are supporting local farmers. 

Last year, Lesa Swartwood, a farmer at Plane View Farms, said conditions were so dry it caused her water pump to stop working. Swartwood said when produce would grow despite the dry conditions, birds poked holes to drink water out of the produce.

Farmers are optimistic about the rest of the growing season and hope conditions are able to return to a normal state so they can plant again. Jim Erbschloe, who enjoys local produce, is eagerly awaiting the return of more crops because he thinks local farmers, "grow a lot of good stuff."