February left the dam dry and cracking. Now the March rains have Mark,Col and Bill Ward looking forward to their small crop property becoming productive again.
February left the dam dry and cracking. Now the March rains have Mark,Col and Bill Ward looking forward to their small crop property becoming productive again. Valerie Horton

Desperate Fraser Coast farmers are hoping for a deluge

AFTER months of drastically dry weather in the region, vegetable growers in Aldershot have planted extra seeds and are hoping ex-tropical cyclone Debbie will deliver as much rain as she can to their farms.

As sporting events are cancelled, drivers are inconvenienced by water over roads and milk and bread goes flying off the shelves, the Ward family said they were hoping for as much rain as possible.

The farming family has spent the last month watching their dam inch closer to empty every day, but are now hoping their situation may take a turn for the better if the region receives a torrential downpour as predicted.

February left the dam dry and cracking. Now the March rains have Mark Ward making a splash as the dam refills.
February left the dam dry and cracking. Now the March rains have Mark Ward making a splash as the dam refills. Valerie Horton

According to the Bureau of Meteorology, the region could receive up to 90mm of rain today, which Bill and Mark Ward said would suit them just fine.

"We've already planted seeds for the upcoming rain event," Bill said.

"Hopefully it will be a big deluge."

February left the dam dry and cracking. Now the March rains have Mark, Bill and Col Ward looking forward to their small crop property becoming productive again.
February left the dam dry and cracking. Now the March rains have Mark, Bill and Col Ward looking forward to their small crop property becoming productive again. Valerie Horton

When facing a real possibility of losing the farm a few months ago, the Ward family started up a GoFundMe page to raise $12,000 for a bore, in order to find extra water to keep their crops alive.

CLICK HERE for more ex-tropical cyclone Debbie coverage

Mark said although the reality of their dam going dry has been set back about nine weeks by the rain they had received already, they still needed community support to set them up for the next drought.

"Even if we received 400mm, it would not fill the dam," Mark said.

Mark said although a large amount of rain would be beneficial in the long term, it could be detrimental to them in the short term.

February left the dam dry and cracking. Now the March rains have Mark,Col and Bill Ward looking forward to their small crop property becoming productive again. Pictured, Bill Ward.
February left the dam dry and cracking. Now the March rains have Mark,Col and Bill Ward looking forward to their small crop property becoming productive again. Pictured, Bill Ward. Valerie Horton

"A prolonged wet patch can cause a lot of disease," he said.

"And if the bees aren't pollinating, that's a problem too.

"But we are in no way complaining about the rain, we need as much as we can get."



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