Late freeze could harm Oklahoma crops

A statewide freeze this week could prove disastrous to Oklahoma crops such as wheat and peaches, farmers say.
by Brianna Bailey Published: April 11, 2013

With temperatures expected to dip below freezing for a second consecutive night in many parts of the state on Wednesday, farmers feared the weather's impact on Oklahoma wheat and peach crops.

There is little that wheat farmer David Gammill can do but wait and see if his crop will be a total loss this year.

“I may have to just give up on the crop completely,” Gammill said.

It could be months before Gammill and other wheat farmers in the state know the extent of the damage.

A freeze on March 26 and a round of hail and rain Tuesday night battered Gammill's 1,000-acre wheat farm near Chattanooga, south of Lawton. Gammill also expected a hard freeze overnight on Wednesday.

Wheat crops in southwest Oklahoma could be especially hard hit by the late freeze because of damage from bad weather in March, said Mike Schulte, executive director of the Oklahoma Wheat Commission.

“Right now it's too early to tell what kind of damage there might be,” Schulte said.

A similar late freeze in the state in April 2009 led to significant damage of that year's wheat crop, Schulte said.

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by Brianna Bailey
Business Writer
Brianna Bailey has lived in Idaho, Germany and Southern California, but Oklahoma is her adopted home. She has a bachelor's degree in Journalism from the Univerisity of Oklahoma and has worked at several newspapers in Oklahoma and Southern...
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