Crop experts are skeptical, but hopeful

Published 12:00 am Sunday, September 19, 2004

CONWAY – Crops are starting to look good in the area, but local farmers are fearing the worst.

&uot;Things do look good right now,&uot; said Keith &uot;Chic&uot; Flythe, of Conway Farm Supply. &uot;But with the rain we’ve had and more on the way, the disease is coming on fast.&uot;

Flythe, along with other farmers gathered Friday morning for pod blasting, were pleased with the appearance of crops, saying the farming season has a lot of &uot;potential.&uot;

&uot;The problem is that the rain is taking the cotton right away,&uot; Flythe said. &uot;It looks good from the road and, for many it will be a good year, but overall there’s a great chance we’re going to lose a lot of it… just not going to get it out of the field. Not to mention the bottom part of the plants that can’t get sunshine, those bowls are never going to open.

&uot;The peanuts are also looking good right now, but with more rain forecast and all this tropical weather, the disease and timing are our worst enemies. We are just going to have a hard time getting them out of the field in time to save what looks like a descent year,&uot; he added.

Weather forecasters are predicting more rain in the area through the weekend and into the first of next week, and to add injury to heartache, another tropical system continues to zone in on the east coast, and it could bring even more rain.

&uot;If we continue to get the heavy rain, we’re going to see a potentially good season go down the drain,&uot; Flythe concluded.

There was some word that peanut digging had begun around Hobgood, but no word as to any one in the immediate area digging as of Friday morning.