MOULTON, Ala. (WHNT) – One farmer in Moulton is working to repair his family farm after an EF-1 tornado hit on January 12.
“Within five minutes it felt like the temperature dropped 10 or 15 degrees and it was just like a dark haze started moving across,” Larry LouAllen, owner of LouAllen Farms, told News 19.
The dark haze turned out to be an EF-1 tornado that not only damaged his farm but also stretched into Morgan County, damaging a marina and campground.
LouAllen Farms is a popular spot for residents to pick strawberries, peaches and various veggies. Unfortunately, the farm’s greenhouses and strawberry fields were in the tornado’s path.
LouAllen estimates the total loss will be around $174,000, and that it will not be covered by insurance. The tornado crossed three acres of strawberry fields, “We grow it on plastic and it lifted a lot of the plastic off the berries, which is almost going to be impossible to put back on,” he said.
He says the bright side of the tornado was that it brought his family closer together. His oldest son is looking forward to taking over the farm one day, and that is the inspiration for the rebuild, LouAllen says.
“I am 74 years old so I am at a point that we need to be regressing not progressing I guess, but my oldest son has moved back from Huntsville/Athens area to Moulton and he’s wanting to take over the nursery side of the business,” LouAllen told News 19.
LouAllen says the farm is going to be in his oldest son’s hands, “It’s gonna be up to him, what he wants to build back and how he wants to build back because he’ll be the LouAllen Farms for the next 30 years.”
LouAllen Farms is estimated to lose about $60,000 in revenue this season due to the major loss of the warm growing spaces, LouAllen says. They expect to re-open in March with the same products as years past, but just less quantity.