WDAZ: Your Home Team

Published September 16, 2013, 06:01 PM

Recent rains while welcomed, could affect harvest

After a summer of dry weather this weekend's rainfall was a welcomed sight, but the recent rain could impact the local harvest.

By: Michael Yoshida, WDAZ

After a summer of extreme weather conditions, farmers are now dealing with recent rains that could affect the upcoming beet harvest.

It's harvest season and Beau Bateman is out where he's been for most of his life -- the farm fields. A man from a family that's been farming for over 120 years, Beau is making some final preparations for the beet harvest -- an upcoming harvest that could be impacted by recent rainfall.

"Saturday we received three fourths of an inch with more reported to the south with reports of one and a half inches to two inches," Said NDSU Extension Agent Lionel Olson.

Farmers say the recent rain is a double-edged sword. On the one hand helping by helping make the crops easier to harvest by loosening the soil. But on the other, they hurt the crops by diluting the sugar content within the beets.

"It will contribute more water to the beat root which will then change the solution of sugar to pulp, which will make the sugar a little less sweet," said Beau.

However, with the harvest still a few weeks away, the beets can recover if provided with dry conditions.

Beau: it will keep using the water that comes from the sky and creating more product.

Beau: "The beet will recover, it's a growing organism so it will bet sweeter but it will take it a little while for it to absorb the water and the metabolize and turn it into sugar."

The beet harvest is expected to begin in October.