It’s been an unusual season for farmers’ markets this year. Several vendors have experienced multiple plantings due to flooding and loss of crops.
The rainy spring affected the normal produce, including corn. If farmers planted beets, and they got a few in the beginning, they could have been able to plant again to have beets, radishes and turnips more toward mid-summer and into the fall.
“I have vendors that planted tomatoes three times and we still don’t get big numbers,” said Martha Clark, manager of the Southside Junction Farmers Market. “And when you say ‘farmers market’ (tomatoes) are what you think of. If you’re going to find them, you gotta come early.”
Another vendor recently plowed up the garden because they had planted three times and lost it all.
“It’s not been good,” Clark said. “Now farmers are impacted by other factors. Things like lettuce and cabbage fare better in cooler temps. Unless (farmers) have a hoop house.”
A majority of local markets, including the South Side location, close toward the end of September.
And despite the flooding, replanting and now drought and heat, farmers still are planning on a decent fall bounty.
Clark said different kinds of squash and pumpkins come due. And early fall through August, watermelons are still available.
“There’s still some things, if the farmers plant late, that will become available in the fall,” she said.
Yet a lot of popular produce sells out within the first hour. Clark urged customers to come as early as possible to any market to get that sought-after produce.