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Winter blues may be coming early for farmers

Posted on September 16, 2014 by 40 Mile Commentator

By Carlie Connolly

It is mid-September and we’ve got our heaters on in the car, maybe some winter coats, hats and scarves. Maybe we will even think about getting those snow tires extra early this year. But wait, isn’t it only September?

Being from Ontario, our weather is pretty normal about this time of year. The beauty of fall with its leaves changing to oranges and yellows, the perfect temperature with that little bit of breeze. That was my kind of fall. And of course those pumpkin spice lattes.

In Calgary, ice pellets, snowdrifts, power outages and city transit bus drivers sense of humour with ‘Merry Christmas’ put along the top of the bus, is what the city of Calgary saw recently. And it’s not going to get any better.

Winter temperatures this year are expected to be colder than normal in Alberta and most of the country, with the coldest in late December, early to mid January and early to mid and late February. Snowfall is also expected to be greater than normal too.

Not only is this weather putting a damper on moods for those not ready for winter yet, but many farmers are having a very difficult time harvesting with the snow and rain in the province that has been seeing recently.

In southern Alberta, the snow has left the ground saturated, ruining the crops. Farmers need that steady sun to get their crops in shape again. With this stormy weather, crops get flattened and farmers are left in the dark waiting for the time to keep going with their harvesting.

Manitoba is also having a slow harvest season with lots of rainfall and cooler temperatures this season. The crop quality in some of the winter wheat, spring wheat, oats and barley fields are also being affected by this dampening weather.

This is going to take farmers extra long to get back to harvesting again. Combines are going to be moving slower and people will have to dig deep in the dirt to get the crop up and see what is left and what they can get out of it.

Longer days and the burning up of more fuel are just some of the disadvantages of this harvest season for these farmers affected with bad weather. Completing their harvest will be a difficult task for these guys and the more sun, the better chance they can get back on stride again.

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