‘Gloo-May’: Cold and wet spring delaying growing season of many crops


WATCH: A cold and wet start to the spring season could affect some of the drinks you enjoy in the summer. Ceilidh Millar reports.

At Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse, staff are bottling, capping and labeling their award-winning cider for the busiest time of the year.

“We can bottle about 2,000 litres on a good day” said owner Kristen Needham.

In the orchard, the flowers on the apple trees indicate that spring has sprung.

Needham says this year’s crop is at least a month behind schedule because of a cold and wet start to the growing season.

“It makes a huge difference in terms of when the fruit eventually sets,” explained Needham.

“The honey bees are a lot less active because of the wet weather. We still need enough time for that fruit to ripen for the remainder of the spring and summer. It’s challenging and we’re concerned.”

If you thought this spring season has been gloomy – you’re right.

With 74 mm of rain, April was the fifth wettest April on record. 

Topping that was March, where it rained 29 out of the 31 days, breaking a record that stood for more than 100 years.

It’s a stark contrast from last year’s unusually warm spring, where Victoria received a mere 12 mm of rain in May.

“We do look at the weather right now and anticipate that it may mean a later harvest for us this year” said Needham.

While it appears May could be a wet one, last year’s successful harvest season means there is lots of cider ready for the summer months ahead.

“The good thing about apple trees is they are very resilient” explained Needham. 

The current weather trend isn’t putting a damper on their annual celebrations.

“This Sunday we will host our May Day celebrations which is a big public open house,” explained Needham.

For more information on Sea Ciders’ upcoming event, visit their website.

Ceilidh MillarCeilidh Millar

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