Pecan Harvest

Growers here in the Southeast are facing a problem they can't control. Overall, the pecan harvest is poor after two months of unusually heavy rain.

After months of drought, most growers welcomed the rain in September, but now it's driving them nuts.

Farmer Frank Richter found his pecan kernels were spongy, shriveled or blackened by plant disease.

Richter said the pecans are sitting out in the fields rotting. He said the heavy equipment used to shake the trees and scoop up the nuts cannot make it through the mud. If the pecans aren't picked at the right time, they start to shrivel.

September and October are usually among Georgia's driest months and that typically provides ideal conditions for harvesting the state's $100 million pecan crop.

This fall is different. The combination of excessive moisture and warm weather is beginning to show up in the agriculture department's crop reports.