More than 90% of Alabama is under a drought emergency. And local farmers are very concerned they may lose all of their crops this season.
This quick burst of heat is drying up plants in fields all across the state and threatening farmer's crops, which is why they tell me they're praying for more rain.
The past week it's rained in Alabama, but it has not been enough. According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, 64 counties are experiencing a drought emergency. Places like Montgomery and Pike Counties are under severe and extreme drought conditions. But the drought is not as bad in western Alabama. Dallas County is under moderate drought conditions.
"One of the things we're going to be doing is encouraging more farmers to get irrigation and make that investment and save those crops when we have these kinds of problems," Said Alabama Department of Agriculture Commissioner, John McMillan.
McMillan says corn, peanuts, soybeans, and cotton are mainly suffering. But farmers like Tim Pierce worry this could be a terrible summer for all crop producers.
"All of our stuff is pretty much burned up," Said Pierce, whose Chilton County farm has been affected. "We've had to buy other stuff, import produce, had to do a lot of watering to keep things from dying and increase prices... It's made it real difficult."
"They're just drying up, so have to get produce from other places... Florida, Georgia, or somewhere else," Said Pierce's daughter, Candace.
The state is doing their best to help local farmers during this drought emergency. Farmers in affected counties are eligible to receive federal low-interest loans. The Alabama Department of Agriculture says farmers have eight months to apply for emergency loan assistance.
Farmers can apply for those loans by visiting the Farmer's Service Administration office. For more information, visit www.usda.gov
and click on the "Disaster Assistance" tab.