YOU’VE heard about the widespread power outages, still in the process of being restored, and the catastrophic loss of trees, but what about small-scale veggie growers like ‘Into The Roots Farm’ at Bena?
Their winter crops, destined for local farmers’ markets and selected stores and cafés, as well as their upcoming spring crops, were completely wiped out by the storm and floods of Wednesday and Thursday, June 9 and 10.
Jay Dunston was out at the Inverloch Farmers’ Market with whatever he and his partners could salvage but they have a huge rebuild and replanting program ahead of them now.
“We were absolutely smashed by the storm, all our crops and spring seedlings, more than half anyway, were washed away and the greenhouse was destroyed,” said Jay, putting on a brave face for customers at Inverloch.
“The south-easterly came in with a lot of wind and rain on our north-facing hill and just washed most of the seedlings we had planted away.
“We’re just looking at spring now and rebuilding.”
The damage has been devastating but they’ve been buoyed by the support of locals, especially a young farmers’ group they are affiliated with who’ve launched a fundraiser on their behalf.
“It’s slow growing in winter anyway, so we’ll try to get ourselves set up for spring.”
What veggies escaped the storm were out for the customers at Inverloch (third Saturday) and likely to be available at Churchill (first Saturday) but it will be very much a reduced offering.
Into the Roots Farm is in the hills above Bena where they have a few acres in organic production including vegetables and flowers.
As well as the local farmers’ markets, they supply the likes of Udder & Hoe (Loch and Kilcunda), The Grove (Krowera), Grow Lightly (Korumburra), The Borough (Korumburra), The Meeniyan Store and Edithvale Community Grocer.