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Summer drought impacts peanut harvest

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WTOC 11: Summer drought impacts peanut harvest

Posted: Aug 11, 2015 5:35 PM EST


South Georgia farmers have corn to harvest, but peanuts have a few weeks left in the field.

Periods of heat and drought slowed development of peanut plants because of when they were planted. 

"It hurt, but it didn't hurt as much as it could have," explained farmer Greg Sikes. "In some spots, the plants had to start over completely because of it."

He said later rains helped the plants recover. He said he's hoping for a few small rains over the next month to completely develop the plants. 

Elsewhere, Sikes and other corn growers have plenty to harvest. That crop saw less impact from the drought because the timing of when they were planted and if they were already pollinated.

"It's all good now, but some of these plants saw some damage," explained Bulloch County's UGA Extension agent Bill Tyson.

Harvest in Bulloch County means plenty to everyone, from farmers to equipment suppliers, retailers, and others. Agriculture accounts for $180 million of the local economy, and 52 percent of that comes from row crops like peanuts, corn, cotton and soybeans.