A BAD SEASON.
HAWKF_*S BAY FRUIT.
"I have seen Australia in bad tiroes, but I don't remember anything quite so bad as I've seen in Hawke's 'Bay during the past fortnight," remarked Mr Braid, representative for Messrs Griffiths & Co, fruit merchants, who bas just been making the round of the orchards in that district.
"It has been altogether a very queer season They have suffered from no fewer than 110 frosts during the season, and two occurred whilst I was there last wpek — tbe week before Christmas! On Wtdnesday of last week 7 degrees of frost—white frost— was registered in parts of tbe district. The earlier frosts came when tbe blossoms were leaving tbe tree and killed tbe fruit. Many of tbe orchard ists thought that there would be no chance of saving it, but when it was looked to swell, the young fruit simply dropped off in a perished condition. Of course, some parts fared better tban others. Tbe orchards on tbe bills round Havelock were not so badly Bffected, and there were orchards at Pakowai, Taradale and Twyford that scaped tbe bite of the frost, whiob seemed to limit its worse pffectn to fibfuply defimd areap, The fruit treps that did not suffer, or suffprpd Ipbp than other?, by frost b»vn been bardly used by the excespively dry weather! and high winds For tbe past ten weeks high winds have been almost! incessant in tbe district, and an abun* dance of apples and pears have been lost in the windfalls. Tbe fruit falls off tbe more readily, owing to the lack of moisture in the ground, which is pretty uniformly parched. i
"Taking th« fruit crops all round, Hawke's Bay is going to record a bad season. The orcbardists who have fruit in any quantity are indeed fortunate. There will be scarcely any apricqts and peaches will be in short supply and of poor quality compared witb normal seasons.
"It is absolutely pitiful to see tbe potatoes. Tbe frost bas nipped tbem again and again, until all you can see above tbe ground is a growth as black as your coat. If other districts bave suffered in anything like tbe manner they have in Hawke's Bay potatoes will be added to the list of high pi iced food products during the coming winter. A farmer told me tbat he put in melon seed three months ago, but it had never germinated, owing to the entire absence of moisture in tbe ground. Oats and rape bad also failed tb germinate. Chaff usually sold here for £3 10a or £4 a ten, is selling at £8 a ten in the stack.
"In tbe opinion of old settlers in the district there is no likelihood of any serviceable rain falling before March next. Ait the indications are there for a very dry summer. Even the artesian wells were running weakly in parts, and tbe people were getting anxious lest tbey should cease flowing altogether. Still, the fruit farmer was taking it all smiling, He was keeping tbe weeds down and looking after' tbe land, praying tbat next season might be a bounteous one."—" Dominion."
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A BAD SEASON., Akaroa Mail and Banks Peninsula Advertiser, Volume LXXIV, Issue 3468, 8 January 1915
A BAD SEASON. Akaroa Mail and Banks Peninsula Advertiser, Volume LXXIV, Issue 3468, 8 January 1915
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