Next Story

Ga. lawmakers may be about to let your annual sales tax holiday end

Winter weather threatens Georgia blueberry, peach crops


Georgia fruit farmers face the potential loss of millions of dollars in crops as a late-winter freeze threatens the state, top agriculture officials said Tuesday. 

State Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black said blueberry and peach farmers in particular are at risk. 

“They’re telling me this morning that 60 percent of the rabbit-eye blueberries and then even some portions of the highbush could get pounded tonight,” Black said. 

Georgia leads the country in blueberry production. Most of central and north Georgia will be under a freeze warning from 11 p.m. Tuesday until 11 a.m. Wednesday. 

MORE: Gusty winds could pose a threat to drivers

House Agriculture Committee Chairman Tom McCall, R-Elberton, said peach farmers, too, are concerned. 

“Farmers north of Macon had been preparing a bumper crop and were almost naming their own prices,” McCall said. 

Now, those farmers could see fruit freeze overnight, while farmers south of Macon have struggled with not enough cool weather, he said. 

Black said it remains to be seen if the state’s Vidalia onion crop is impacted by the freeze. 

“Onions are a little more resilient,” he said. “I’m not ready to comment on that. We’ll wait and see.”

There’s not much that can be done to help farmers, Black said, except pray for warmer weather. 

“We’re going to be joining several groups, there are prayer meetings all over South Georgia,” he said. “We’ll be asking the Lord to protect us.”

RELATEDHere’s how to protect your spring flowers from frost in Atlanta

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Georgia Politics

Why Donald Trump is more like Ronald Reagan than most other Republicans
Why Donald Trump is more like Ronald Reagan than most other Republicans

A roundup of editorials Monday looks at the economy as Donald Trump and the Republicans work on a tax cut bill. Opinions from the Right  From NBC News: Trump’s active leadership style and his combination of populism with market economics is far closer to Reagan’s words and deeds than anything House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wisconsin...
Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama remind us of who we are as a country and other opinions from the Left
Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama remind us of who we are as a country and other opinions from the Left

Here’s a roundup of editorials that remind us of the values we should cherish as a country and how our democracy needs to recover.  Opinions from the Left: From CNN: “We know, deep down, that repression is not the wave of the future. We know that the desire for freedom is not confined to, or owned by, any culture; it is the inborn...
Georgia blocks $100 million in fraudulent tax returns, so far, in 2017
Georgia blocks $100 million in fraudulent tax returns, so far, in 2017

Despite major data breaches such as the one at Equifax, tax agencies — including the Georgia Department of Revenue — are reporting increasing success in the war to stop fraudulent returns from turning into big money for crooks. Department of Revenue Commissioner Lynne Riley said the state has blocked $108 million worth of fraudulent returns...
Audio: Analysis of the Atlanta mayoral debate
Audio: Analysis of the Atlanta mayoral debate

Sunday’s big debate hosted by Channel 2 Action News started out slow, but by the end the candidates for mayor of Atlanta began taking big swings at each other over ethics, over the city’s ongoing corruption scandal and over whose tax lien is the most embarrassing.   Listen to WSB Radio’s Condace Pressley, AJC political reporter...
Cheerleaders continue to take a knee at Kennesaw State football games
Cheerleaders continue to take a knee at Kennesaw State football games

Four Kennesaw State University cheerleaders were seen taking a knee in the stadium tunnel during the national anthem at the university’s football game Saturday evening, continuing their protest to raise awareness about police misconduct and racial inequality. The protest is part of an ongoing controversy on the 35,000 student campus that has...
More Stories