Valley Farmers Welcome the Rain

December 16, 2008 12:28:19 AM PST
Valley farmers are glad to see this storm, but much more rain and snow is needed to meet their needs over the growing season.As far as growers are concerned, a good soaking is a good start. But it will take time and several more storms to improve the irrigation supply after two years of drought.

Falling snow was a welcome sight around the state. Our local mountains received some fresh snow but one storm certainly does not make a season. Besides, the Valley's playing catch-up.

Sarge Green said, "It's a good down payment, more like a credit card payment because the storm we just had gave us about half an inch and it will take ten of those to make an average year."

Green recently attended a statewide meeting discussing the drought. He was shocked by the rare sight of a bare Mount Shasta.

You can see the water levels at San Luis Reservoir in Merced County are also dangerously low. After two dry years local growers are glad to see the threatening skies.

Randy McFarland said, "Groundwater has been going down as they've had to rely so much on their pumps so yes indeed farmers are really happy to see this sort of weather."

Sarge Green says in terms of water storage our bank account has been drawn to the bottom.

Sarge Green said, "We're priming the pump. The pump being the snowpack in the mountains. The first storm really just covers and blankets the ground puts water in the soil so the next storm can actually run off."

Randy McFarland said, "In fact, we need a lot more of it. One big storm after another if we are able to break this dry cycle."

McFarland hopes a few more big storms will hit before the next snowpack survey January 15th. That will give us a better feel on what kind of season we're having.

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