Cooler, wet weather pushes back planting for market farmers


This wet and cooler weather feels nice, but for some market farmers, it's created a challenging growing season.

Under the wind turbine at Richland Community College, "There is peaches and cantaloupe and watermelon that is all good for you," said Saturday Produce Market customer Eileen Butts.

Local farmers from across Central Illinois are selling fresh produce. They said so far it's been friendly, fun and "it's been challenging," said Market Farmer Thomas Hensley.

"The only challenging thing has been getting around the rain," said Farmer Duane Gibbons.

A wet, cool summer means crops were delayed.

"You can't get out and work in the gardens when it's so wet," Hensley said.

But the rain wasn't keeping customers from stopping by.

"Usually I'll come out for green beans because sometimes I'll grow the green beans at home but they're not really producing great in my garden," Butts said.

Farmers at Henhouse Farms would have liked to have the green beans out about three weeks ago but wet weather pushed back the planting.

"It's been a little slow with the cool weather but for the most part it's been pretty good," Gibbons said.

Especially for some vegetables, "It's been a very good year for cabbages and broccoli, cauliflower, they like the cool, wet weather," Hensley said.

Farmers say they prefer this weather over last year's dry season, "And next year, who knows," Hensley said.

As for right now, "It's like family reunion every Saturday," he said.

The market is each Saturday from 8 a.m. until noon. It goes until October.

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