Georgia pecan farmers are planting thousands of new trees. It’s all to keep up with a growing demand for their product more than 7,000 miles away in China and they’re not stopping there. Farmer Trent Mason stands in the middle of his 2,000 acre pecan orchard in Fort Valley. On one side are 20-year old trees covered in tiny nuts and on the other 300 acres of saplings, planted in January.
The University of Georgia is looking for a better peanut. UGA researchers have announced plans to map the legume’s genome, potentially allowing for hardier plants and better profits for Georgia farmers.
While much of north Georgia enjoys average or above average rain fall, the lower two thirds of the state remain in a drought that began last year. State Climatologist David Stooksbury says that while Atlanta had heavier than normal rains, Macon received only half of its normal precipitation in the last month.
Described as using ‘science-based agricultural practices,’ the bill calls for an integrated system that would expand output, but also protect natural resources and preserve the land for future generations.
There’s hope a funding plan might soon be in-place to keep a network of weather monitoring stations running across Georgia. It involves bringing all interested parties together to pay their fair share.