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Rainy June helps some crops, hurts others

Bruno Raymond

So far, this month has been the fourth rainiest June in central New York, measuring at more than seven inches. For farmers that’s been a little bit of a mixed bag.  

The crop that’s suffered the most is strawberries. Baldwinsville farmer Brian Reeves says the berry does not mix well with a lot of rain.

"For our strawberry season it’s been bad. We have not had a great strawberry season because of so much rain and we’ve had some decay. The public doesn’t come out in so much rainy weather. So it’s been a below average strawberry season because of rain. The taste of the berries has been terrific. I think they had a good a flavor this year as they’ve ever had,” said Reeves.

But other crops in the region have a better outlook

The old “knee-high by the Fourth of July” adage doesn’t look like it applies this season, as many corn fields are boasting stalks well over that knee-high marker.

Reeves says all the rain has helped the corn.  But also he notes a lot of it has to do with the kind of corn he and other farmers have in the field. He says the sweet corn grown for eating is well ahead of the feed.

“Our goal -- we don’t usually meet it -- is to pick corn by July Fourth.  So that’s why this corn is so high. This field got a big head start under clear plastic mulch in early April. It won’t be the 4th, but we’ll have sweet corn by the 1oth of July. And that’s a whole different thing form the old adage knee high. That’s for the animal corn, which right now there’s a lot of feed corn around that’s between waste high and knee high right now.”

Ellen produces news reports and features related to events that occur in the greater Syracuse area and throughout Onondaga County. Her reports are heard regularly in regional updates in Morning Edition and All Things Considered.