Local farmers face snowy weather

After what started out as an unseasonably warm winter, farmers in the Eugene area are now trying to fight off the elements.

Posted: Feb 22, 2018 7:01 PM

EUGENE, Ore.-- After what started out as an unseasonably warm winter, farmers in the Eugene area are now trying to fight off the elements.

KEZI caught up with Charles Little, a farmer, on Thursday, to find out what effects the snow has on crops. Little has been farming in Eugene since 1986. He owns Charles Little and Company, formerly known as Sparhawk farms.

Little told KEZI being prepared for cold weather is the most important part. He said as of Thursday, the temperatures were not low enough to harm most of the plants at the Charles Little and Company farm.

"I've been watching the weather apps and following it closely, so this afternoon I'll probably put some insulated blankets over some of the little plants that we have in containers that are in our little greenhouse…and turn on the bottom heat. That'll make me feel comfortable,” Little said Thursday.

In some cases, the snow can actually help crops and plants, by insulating them. But, if temperatures dip into the teens or lower, that's when Little said farmers start to worry.

"We worry about like peach crops, cherry crops. Both of those types of trees are like these almonds, where they want to bloom early. We're counting on that crop, every year,” Little said.

He said in the case of an orchard, if it stays cold much longer, then there could be problems. That's because if there happens to be an early bloom, where crops like peaches or cherries are being grown, they could freeze.

For the plants and flowers that need extra heat, they do use heated greenhouses.

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