Late freeze has farmers racing to protect their crops

MARBLE FALLS, Texas (KXAN) — Many local farmers are preparing for the possibility of freezing temperatures Monday night and Tuesday morning as a cold air mass moves across the region. Some areas could see record lows.

A Freeze Warning is in effect from 1-10 a.m. Tuesday morning across all Hill Country counties, except Blanco County. Temperatures in the counties under Freeze Warning could see temperatures between 28-32 degrees early Tuesday.

It’s not something you typically think about in April, but Monday night was definitely a night to cover up plants and bring pets inside.

Many farmers worried the freezing temps in some area could hurt local crops.

“I’ve never covered (my plants) this late,” said Dan Copeland, who owns Sweet Berry Farms in Marble Falls. “This is the latest we’ve covered and we’ve been here 15 years.”

With temperatures expected to be below freezing in some areas, Copeland says he isn’t taking any chances.

His team of farmers spent hours covering strawberries with  covers which are 50 feet wide and 300 feet long.

“The bloom is 30 days from bloom to fruit,” Copeland said. “So if we allow blooms to freeze…30 days from now we wouldn’t have fruit.”

Despite heavy wind gusts Monday and already colder temperatures, some visiting from out of town still made it a point to stop by.

“We’re being blamed for bringing the weather with us from Seattle,” said Don Ripley.

Copeland also fears this kind of weather is hurting business.

“We’ll pull some off for people to pick, but it does hurt business because no one’s coming out in this weather,” he added. “So we’re not going to take a chance. Here we are in the middle of picking…we got a lot of strawberries to pick.  It’s just not worth it to take a chance.”

blog comments powered by Disqus