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From dusty to drenched, relief for farmers

LET IT RAIN: Glen Boal, of Loch Lomond, with a corn crop that will benefit from the recent rains.
LET IT RAIN: Glen Boal, of Loch Lomond, with a corn crop that will benefit from the recent rains. Jonno Colfs

WITH decent rainfalls in the last 72 hours and the promise of more to come, things are looking good for the region's parched farmlands and their resilient farmers.

Warwick itself has recorded about 50mm this week, but as is usually the case, some areas have seen much more and others less.

Glen Boal, whose farmlands cover about 600ha along the Warwick-Killarney Rd at Loch Lomond said the recent falls had been a godsend.

"We've had 80mm over the couple of days,” he said.

"Since late November, when we planted, the rains have been pretty sparse, 2mm here, 5mm here.

"All the good falls were going right around us, but this has been great.

"It's come a little late for about half my corn crop, which is almost ready for harvest, but the other half and the sunflowers and mungbeans are going to benefit greatly from this.”

Mr Boal said the way the rain fell was also helpful.

"If it all hammers down at once and you get 100mm in an hour or something stupid like that, it all runs off to the creek,” he said.

"This way with 37mm and then a good break and then a follow-up fall of 43mm, the ground and the crops get a chance to soak it up.

"I'd like a day or two of sunshine now and then a bit more at the end of the week would be fantastic.”

Without a reliance on irrigation, Mr Boal said he watched the weather daily.

"It's always a fine line, and in the end you can't do anything about it,” he said.

Alan Judd from Yandilla, about 100km west of Warwick, said he'd had just 25mm since September.

"Now we've had 50mm in last 72 hours,” he said.

"We had a bit of sorghum and mungbeans in this summer, but the weather has dictated the yields haven't been great.

"So this is a really good start to the winter crop season.”

However, Mr Judd said while the rain was great for some, it's not for others.

"A lot of blokes out this way are trying to pick cotton,” he said.

"The rain doesn't destroy it but it keeps the harvesters out of the paddock and reduces the quality a bit.

"The rain always brings mixed blessings, you're never going to please everyone.”

Mr Judd said it was the driest it had been for 10 years.

"We need a lot more to get rid of the damage of the dry,” he said.

"You don't fix a bad season with one downfall.

"We need regular rain from now on to ease the pain of a poor summer crop.”

The Bureau of Meteorology forecast shows showers and storms are expected every day this week, right through until Monday.



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