Dry conditions costing some local businesses thousands - KPTV - FOX 12

Dry conditions costing some local businesses thousands

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

Some local businesses that rely on the seasonal fall rain are struggling to deal with the unusually dry weather this year.

With no rain, farmers and stable owners are coming up with other ways to keep their plants watered and animals fed.

Hoses and sprinklers have replaced the rain that usually waters the plants at Larsen Farm Nursery in Hillsboro each fall.

"Usually by now we're not watering as much," said one of the nursery's owners, Destin Brown.

But this year Brown and his staff have been watering their plants every day to make up for the lack of rainfall.

 Customers are also spending less on fall planting.

"I delivered some plants last night to a lady who said she was going to buy more but the ground is still pretty hard so she was not ready to plant yet," said Brown.

He grew up in the area and has never seen conditions this dry so late in the year.

In fact, FOX 12 meteorologist Mark Nelson said we are in the driest three month period in Portland history. There has only been .25 inches of rainfall since July 1.

"I'm ready for some of that good Oregon rain. Turn the plants and grass green again," said Brown.

In North Plains, they're ready for green grass too. Fred Hall said there would normally be an inch of grass on at his Sky Ranch Stables. Instead, the pasture is covered in dirt and dry weeds.

"This year there's no feed at all," said Hall. "There hasn't been for a month."

Since the pasture is already bare, Hall has been forced to feed hay the 40 horses boarded at his stables, more than two months earlier than he normally would.

It's costing Hall more than a thousand dollars a month.

"These are the things that everyone who is a farmer gets used to," said Hall. "It's hard to beat mother nature."

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