In eastern Washington, we experience all four seasons in full effect. Ranging from 100° F in the summers to below freezing temperatures in the winter time. This particular winter has been especially eventful; we have seen almost two feet of snow, and the end doesn't seem to be anywhere in sight.
Am I writing about the weather? Of course, I am! For dryland farms like ours, the weather is one of the most important factors that play into whether we have a crop to harvest each summer. Today there are endless varieties of plants that are specially bred to endure different climates. In Ritzville, we receive little moisture and often have early frosts or heat waves that threaten our grain.
The positive side to raising a crop like triticale is that it possesses characteristics that make it more tolerant to our changing seasons. It requires small amounts of rain and can handle just about anything that Mother Nature throws at it.
While winter is still in full swing, my family is glad to see the bright white blanket of snow laying over our small triticale plants. It protects the crop and ensures that once winter does finally subside, there will be a green carpet of triticale waiting to take off as spring approaches.
So, next time you wish for the weather to change, keep a farmer in mind. That farmer may need the rain on a gray, dreary day or the snow that just doesn't seem to melt. You never know what they might be growing that you'll be eating or drinking later on.
Until next time - cheers!
Maya Jane, President and CEO