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Lack of rain impacts Oklahoma farms

Updated:
Some areas were lucky enough to see rain in the early morning hours Thursday. That moisture is really needed. The Tulsa area was 4.5 inches below normal for rainfall during the month of May.

News on 6 anchor Craig Day says many folks hope that's a trend that doesn't last any longer.

At Don Carmichael's farm in Bixby, they're digging potatoes and hoping we get more rain. "I think it's probably as dry this time of year as I've seen it. It's pretty dry." Carmichael says despite the dry spring, many of his early crops are doing ok. But without rain, what happens to late summer crops is anyone's guess. "You've gotta kind of be a gambler to farm. You know."

The upside of the dry conditions is that crews can actually get in fields to work. The downside is, some crops could suffer. "That's just farming."

While many farmers hope for rain to help their crops, many homeowners just want rain to help their grass grow. There are some things to keep in mind to make sure you get more bang for your buck when it comes to watering.

Sue Gray is a horticulturist with the OSU Extension office. She recommends a deep soaking when watering. "Just use a cake pan, put it on your lawn. Use your lawn sprinkler and when it has reached an inch of water in your cake pan, then that's probably an inch of water you've applied. You may need to do that once or twice a week, especially because it's not only dry, it's hot and windy."

Gray says you should water in the mornings, to provide moisture, but to give grass the chance to dry out by midday, which means your lawn would be less prone to disease. As for Don Carmichael, "these are some of those good sweet onions." He'll continue to be optimistic, and hope the dry spell doesn't last much longer. “We're just not going to have that. We're going to have rain. We'll get it."

Experts say mulch is also very important for our flowerbeds. A couple of inches of mulch will help to retain water and keep weeds down too.
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