AUSTIN (KXAN) — Our harsh weather this year has made it difficult for local farmers. Meteorologist Sean Kelly spoke with General Manager of Boggy Creek Farm Tracy Greyer about the challenges she faced and continues to battle. Boggy Creek Farm is located in east Austin and is one of the last few farms located within city limits.
Many local farm-to-table restaurants source from it throughout the year. Italian restaurant L’Oca d’Oro, in particular, heavily relies on its produce and strategizes menu items around in-season produce and how successful a harvest was.
This year has been difficult for Boggy Creek Farm starting with the ice storm and intense winter freeze early on. Greyer said the only thing that survived during that event was her spinach. Peas, cauliflower and broccoli were all lost. It wasn’t just the freeze that killed her crops, but the duration of those cold spells and how windy it got. The winds made it difficult to keep everything covered.
The one benefit she added was the spinach got a little sweeter.
Then from the unseasonably cold winter in Central Texas came our record-breaking heat that kicked off our summer. With the heat came very little rain.
Because of the extreme weather, the farm’s Daesene Green Eggplant, normally one of its most reliable crops, did not do well at all this season. It did not grow to typical size or color.
“It’s always been one of our biggest crops this time of year… and we just we have not been able to sell it this summer. So that’s really hurt us.” Greyer said.
But some crops did flourish despite recent summer heat, arugula and butternut squash to name a few. Much of their success has been attributed to the farm’s on-site well and expanding rain capture system. These together have helped it limit drastic impacts during the most extreme of droughts.
Despite the changing climate and more extreme weather happening more frequently, they fortunately, so far have still managed to continue to grow all the same things they have in years passed.
With that said, decisions to steer away from certain crops that can’t handle these events seem like a possibility in the future if this chaotic weather pattern becomes the new normal.