AUSTIN, Texas — Texas is experiencing the worst drought conditions the state has seen in years. Not only is there increased wildfire danger, but it's becoming challenging for farmers.
Derek Emadi, the owner of Emadi Acres Farm in Lockhart, said the drought is making things difficult.
"This row of tomatoes, I planted it three times because the plants just kept dying on me like this," Emadi said gesturing at some of his crops.
The current drought conditions are drying up some bodies of water and killing crops. Right now, Texas has the worst corn conditions in the country, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Emadi grows his crops on a smaller scale compared to other farmers in the area.
"Because I grow on this kind of scale, I do use drip irrigation and I use shade. So it doesn't impact me like it would other farmers who are out in the open," Emadi said.
About 97% of the State of Texas is in a drought, according to Texas A&M Forest Service.
"April and May are some of our wettest months, and that precipitation really didn't come this year, and now that we're into summer, the drought is continuing," said Walter Flocke, a spokesperson for Texas A&M Forest Service.
Areas that are shaded would usually hold moisture, but even the shade can't beat the effects of a drought.
"If we had some moisture, these plants would just be loaded with peppers. But this one plant might have, you know, six peppers on it. That's not where I'd like it to be," Emadi said.
For several years, Emadi has served restaurants and farmers' markets in the area. This year, the quality is not quite up to his standards.
"I think everybody's going to have reduced yields and really reduced quality in their crops," Emadi said.
Farmers like Emadi across Central Texas are looking forward to some much-needed rain.
According to Texas A&M Forest Service, the current drought conditions are not as bad as in 2011. That's when the state saw the most intense period of drought. That year, the Bastrop County Complex Fire became the most destructive wildfire in Texas.
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