La Feria cotton farmer fears 'significant' losses with TS 'Don'
Sat, 30 Jul 2011 04:01:49 GMT —
Man and machine worked together in a race against Mother Nature across cotton fields in La Feria.
The stakes were considered high.
Farmers needed to pick as much cotton as possible or face the threat of significant losses in their harvest due to tropical rain.
"The cotton's gonna shrink," Steve Wolf said. "We're afraid it's all gonna be on the ground and we're not going to be able to pick it."
Wolf Farms in La Feria picked at a feverish pace Friday afternoon.
Steve Wolf nervously watched the work in one field off South FM 506.
He knows what kind of damage heavy rain could do to half his 300 planted acres still left to be harvested.
"With a heavy rain... A 35 percent loss... That could be a hundred dollars an acre or anything in between," Wolf said.
The harsh reality pushed his crew to the max.
Sam Ruiz was feeling the effects of fatigue behind the wheel of a stripper harvester.
He explained how it would normally take days not hours to get the job done right.
"The cotton's gonna shrink... We're afraid it's all gonna be on the ground and we're not going to be able to pick it," Ruiz said.
Wolf said all he could do was hope for the best and pick as quickly as possible for the worst.
It's a tale likely shared by similar farmers across the RGV as Tropical Storm Don hit the South Texas Coast.