Farmers thank heavens

GRASS-GROWING RAIN: David Jones musters cows and calves for branding before the skies bring much-needed rain to the region.
GRASS-GROWING RAIN: David Jones musters cows and calves for branding before the skies bring much-needed rain to the region. Contributed

GRAZIERS and farmers around Rolleston rejoiced as the skies brought much-needed rain to the region.

Ruth Jones and her husband, David, who farm chickpeas and wheat 40km north of Rolleston, said the rain had been perfect and just what they needed.

"We haven't had a large deluge like that in a long time,” Mrs Jones said.

"We have been able to top up a couple of our rain tanks, all of our dams are now full and we are ready for winter.

"All the graziers around Rolleston are pretty happy with all the rain we have got.

"It's just been good grass-growing rain.”

The Somerby Pastoral Co business partner said the recent downpour had allowed them to put in their winter crop.

"We will probably start planting wheat around May and possibly some chickpeas, depending on the price,” she said.

"The 60 per cent trade tariff imposed by India has affected us a fair bit, so we don't know if we will plant chickpeas this year.

"Other than that, we will continue our breeding and fattening programs.

"The rain has put us ahead about three months because the grass is looking so good.”

Mrs Jones said they generally received some sort of downpour every summer but for a while things weren't looking good.

"It was much needed, we were getting a little bit worried for a while there,” she said.

"We have had a few showers here and there and it did grow a bit of grass but the rain we got managed to fill up all of our dams and that will keep us going for a couple of years.

"If we don't get good summer rain next year, we have got enough to get us through for another couple of years, which is a bit of a load off.”

Mrs Jones said overall they had received about 180mm of rain throughout February.

Though she said they were hoping it started to dry out moving forward.

"These little showers are good but we would like it to dry out a bit so we can get some more grass growing before winter hits,” she said.

"A little bit of sunshine would be nice so we can get some grass booming.”

Topics:  farmers and graziers rolleston weather

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