Peanut Crops at Crucial Time

By: Martha Spencer
By: Martha Spencer

The beginning of peanut harvest begins in about six weeks, and farmers have high hopes for this year’s crop. But, how much rain, and when it rains will make or break this year’s harvest?

"Peanut harvest usually begins early September and lasts through October. It can vary depending on where we are in the state," explains Barry Tillman of the University of Florida Center for Education in Marianna, Florida.

How much rain is received between then is crucial.

Ed Jowers, director of the Jackson County Extension Services said, "The biggest thing is we do have an excellent crop this year, one of the best I’ve seen in 25 years. And, we don't want to lose it; it really looks good for us right now."

The peanut harvest begins in early September and lasts through October. If too much rain is received, it can make the difference

"What we don't want is rain coming in later in the harvest season, when we have peanuts that are dug up and on top of the ground; that could be a lot worse than having rain now," adds Tillman.

But for right now, a few extra inches should not be a problem.

Tillman continued, "I think a good rainfall event that’s a slow event, not too fast, could be good for the crop in a lot of areas where they don't have irrigation potential."

According to Jowers, "Right now, the rains won't affect us too much, except for being able to get into the fields to spray for disease control."

However, a lot is on the line, and high expectations have sprouted.

"Really, until the end of September, early October is really crucial to us," Jowers concluded.

Peanuts take between 135 to 150 days to harvest, depending on the type.

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