News

Heading for record dry run

This year's cane harvest will be one of the smallest the Valley has seen in the past 20 years due to recent floods. Farmers hope the dry spell will last until planting has finished.
This year's cane harvest will be one of the smallest the Valley has seen in the past 20 years due to recent floods. Farmers hope the dry spell will last until planting has finished. Lee Constable

PROVIDED it is not raining as you read this Grafton will be on the way to recording its driest August since 1880.

Meteorologist at the BOM, Alison Skim said yesterday the Grafton station has received just 1.2mm of rain for the month of August so far.

That small fall occurred on Wednesday, August 24, when a scattered thunderstorm glanced Grafton.

While town dwellers have been enjoying the sun, the dry spell has also been great news for the cane- growers.

"This weather has been a good break after the past couple of years and we're lapping the dry weather up," said Clarence Cane Growers Association manager Pat Battersby.

The cane harvest has been rolling on over the past couple of weeks and farmers have been glad to get some dry weather which makes the harvesting process easier and cheaper.

Harvesters have been able to use rubber-tyred chaser bins to transport the crop across the cane fields instead of steel-track chaser bin vehicles which are far more expensive to run.

"We have been able to harvest with rubber-tyred infield transporters and that has been a dream," said Mr Battersby.

"Doing it that way is much more cost-effective when compared to harvesting with tracked infield-transporters."

Mr Battersby also said the price for cane is looking reasonably good but the crop that is in the ground at the moment is small because a lot of cane was wiped out by the floods over the past two years.

It is estimated that this year's cane harvest will be one of the smallest in the Valley in the past 20 years.

The reason is that planting over the past two years has been severely hindered by floods.

"The January 2011 and January 2012 floods destroyed a lot of what was planted."

Mr Battersby welcomed the dry spell as a much-needed break and hoped that the dry weather would continue until after planting was finished.

Then he said he hoped there would be light spring rains to nourish the incoming crop.

Topics:  bom clarence cane growers association farmers rain sugar cane



NSW lightly loosens liquor, lockout laws

Critics say the relaxed lockout laws are still too stringent to promote a thriving night life.

Bottle shops will be allowed to stay open until 11pm

Spotify Summer Tour pops into Valley

The Spotify Summer Tour truck is heading for the Clarence Valley this weekend!

Swedish online music streaming service comes to town bearing gifts

Blue Pools bloom here to stay over summer

The Blue Pools at Angourie which has been closed due to a toxic blue-green algae bloom.

Hot, dry weather means pools will likely stay closed

Local Partners

Spotify Summer Tour pops into Valley

YOU'LL have the chance to win some summer party essentials when the Spotify Summer Tour rolls into town this weekend.


Kernaghan's a 'boy from the bush' with a timeless quality

Country music singer Lee Kernaghan.

Lee Kernaghan is celebrating the 25th year of his breakthrough song.

Ready to rumble: Boxing makes long-awaited return to Grafton

DETERMINED: Grafton Amateur Boxing Club members Zac Cotten (Cruiserweight), James Morrison (Jnr Featherweight), Eddie Debono (Super Heavyweight), Rhys Walters (Light Heavyweight), Joseph Pigg (Jnr Welterweight), Jamie Mansfield (Cruiserweight) are prearing for upcoming fight night in Grafton.

Five North Coast title belts up for grabs

Cyclist's 24 hours of pain for mental health

International endurance mountain-bike rider Morgan Pilley is used to pushing through the elements, but this weekend he'll push on to raise money for local mental health services in a charity ride at Junction Hill.

Ride For Youth to raise money for local youth mental health services

Chris Pratt fell asleep while babysitting

Chris Pratt revealed he fell asleep during babysitting duties

Kylie Minogue: I want to get married soon

Pop star Kylie Minogue has revealed she hopes to get married soon

Amanda Seyfried lets slip the sex of her baby

Amanda Seyfried has suggested the sex of her baby

How predictable are your Netflix habits?

Stranger Things is taking the world by storm as a new-age nostalgic Sci-Fi Thriller

The new entertainment binging pattern

Kanye West is on the mend now he's back from hospital

Kanye West is more relaxed since returning home from hospital

WATCH: The young Aussie actor playing Barack Obama

A screenshot of the trailer for Barry, a new film from Netflix.

Aussie teen nails Obama's early university years

Give a little more this Christmas

TIME TO GIVE: Lee Johns, Courtney Smith and Daniel Kelly of Ray White Yamba promote their Little Ray Of Giving Christmas gift appeal.

Call out for presents, big or small

INSIDE STORY: The highlights of your $150 million CBD

GRAND PLAN: The highlights of the Ipswich CBD redevelopment and where they will be located.

Work on city heart's radical transformation to begin next year

VOTE IN OUR POLL: Sand mine opponents face serious dilemma

Public meeting for the proposed sand mine at Maroochydore last week.

Coast MP calls on Minister to stop KRA proposal with stroke of a pen

Developer's grand new multi-million dollar estate

NEW ESTATE: This is the only plan revealed by the property developer's new Billabongs Estate in Agnes Water.

DEVELOPER given the go ahead for a massive estate with 149 homes.

Banks reclaim Gladstone homes as job losses bite

LONG FALL: Property experts Heron Todd say, based on key market indicators, Gladstone is still travelling to the bottom of the market, with property prices set to get cheaper.

Property valuers say Gladstone housing market hasn't hit the bottom

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!