Farmers thankful for this week’s rain, want more wet weather in the days to follow

MADISON COUNTY, Ala. - Meteorologists said we still need at least a couple more two to three-inch rainfalls to break this historical drought. Local farmers are crossing their fingers, waiting on the rain to help their winter wheat grow.

"The rain sure would be nice to get the seed bed ready," Bragg Farm's Ben Smith said.

Even this week's rain does not measure up to the amount Smith's winter wheat crop needs.

"A lot of farmers quit planting wheat because they couldn't get it in the ground, and no guarantee of a rain coming to help it germinate," Smith explained.

Smith said a field of winter wheat should look like a solid green yard.

"It did germinate but it's sporadic and not even," Smith said while looking at one of the fields. "It will eventually affect the yield this summer."

Smith said the warm weather has not helped either.

"Once the wheat sprouts, emerges and gets to the height," Smith explained. "We'd like for frost to come and stunt its growth. We don't want it to get too big because then a frost will end up killing it."

For farmers, there is not an off-season.

"As far as getting ready for next year,what we're doing right now is affecting the seed bed, what next year's yield and seed harvest will be like," Smith said.

While those working the fields at Bragg Farm want the rain, Smith said that is not every farmers wish.

"I'm sure there's some people that would like for it to stop raining so they can plant a little more wheat," Smith said. "But, we're lucky enough we got ours planted and we're gambling on this rain."