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Farmers are experiencing the effects of a drought and are trying to make ends meet

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Posted at 10:38 PM, Mar 22, 2023

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The Coastal Bend has been in a drought and some groups are starting to feel its effects more than others.

"You really just gotta take everything with a grain of salt and figure out how to adapt," Owner of Wendland Farms Daniel Wendland said.

Farmers like Daniel have been struggling this crop season. They have not gotten as much rain as they hoped for. They told us if they don't get rain soon, it could affect the rest of their year.

"Once you get into the summer and it really gets dry and hot, if you don’t get those rains in June, you don’t make anything. It's done, so we don’t get paid. We only get paid one time a year," Wendland said.

Farmers started planting in mid-Feb and earlier this month. They had to take advantage of the moisture while they had it because they don't expect much more anytime soon. They hope this year is not as bad as last.

"Last couple have been a little tough. Last year was really tough. We had about half a crop. If you take about half of your income it's pretty tough making ends meet when they cut your income that far," local farmer Scott Frazier said.

Local farmers need around thirty inches of rain a year and right now they are three inches behind schedule. The impact of this goes beyond their fields.

"If we don’t produce the crop, whether its cotton, sorghum, corn, whatever it is that makes the price of it go up. So that means all the food, clothing, everything you buy goes up too," Wendland said.

Corpus Christi winds don't help either. Wendland told us if winds reach up to 45 miles per hour, 400 acres of cotton could be lost. That is equivalent to $140,000. He said his job is riskier than betting in Las Vegas.

"Farming and ranching is a game built by people who have a great deal of faith inside themselves. It is a very risky game but it's what we do" Wendland said.

Farmers need to have their crops planted and grown by April 15. If they don't, they'll have to reach out to their insurance and hope for a better outcome next year.