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Lack of Rainfall Affecting Central Illinois Farmers

The drought affecting the Peoria area has caused problems for farmers in the region. If there is not a significant rainfall within the next few weeks, the corn crop will be affected.

There has been plenty of sunshine recently, but the other critical component for plant growth, water, has been nonexistent for the past month or so. Spring Bay farmer Roger Hammer, who owns Hammer’s Farm Market in the Metro Center in Peoria, talked about the challenges presented by the drought.

“The crops are late, some of them like my radishes didn’t do too well from the lack of rain, some stuff is going to be late because you might have to replant it, and the lack of rain makes the ground really hard to try to work it to keep the weeds and stuff out as well,” Hammer said.

According to Peoria County Farm Bureau Manager Patrick Kirchhofer, the next few weeks will determine how crops will fare, especially corn.

“Whenever corn is going to start to tassel and pollination occurs we’re definitely going to need some rain within the next couple of weeks to help this corn crop along,” Kirchhofer said.

It is still early enough in the summer to where panic hasn’t set in yet. To Kirchhofer, the damage the drought could have is not limited to the farmers, but the region’s economy as well.

“Even though we’re looking at the farmer as losing money and not having a good year, it’s going to trickle down into our entire economy if we have a lack of bushels from what we would normally have in the fall,” Kirchhofer said.

Source : Central