Berries and Flowers Getting Special Attention This Week

Strawberry farmers are not getting a lot of sleep this week.  They have been working round the clock,  keeping one eye on the thermometer while doing everything they could to keep the plants warm. The freezing weather that arrived late Saturday has returned each night this week so far. Clayton Garner Jr. owns a strawberry farm in Newport in Carteret County, NC

. He tells WITN News…


:13                  Q: if go.


Time: 13s


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The unseasonable warm February, combined with the mild winter, caused most of the plants to begin growing earlier than usual, which makes them more susceptible to a freeze.


Landscapers at Asheville, NC’s Biltmore Estate are also scrambling to make sure a spring tradition isn’t spoiled by the bitter cold this week. Long sheets of frost blanket cover about 950 linear-feet of flower beds in front of the estate’s gatehouse alone. Biltmore landscape supervisor Bob Smart tells WLOS News…

:12            Q: it done.

[CutID: <NCNN News Audio> BILTMORE BLOOMS-1.mp3

Time: 12s


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Smart has been checking all the rows of daffodils and tulips he and his crews are trying to protect, some 24,000 bulbs in various stages of growth on the estate.


America’s two biggest general farm groups are not happy with what they’ve seen so far of President Trump’s proposed fiscal 2018 budget for the Department of Agriculture.

The American Farm Bureau Federation and National Farmers Union argue it’s the wrong time with the worst farm economy in over a decade and big cuts in previous farm bills, to cut one-fifth of USDA’s discretionary budget.

American Farm Bureau budget adviser RJ Karney argues Congress, not the president, writes the budget and approves spending…

Cut #1  :16 OC:…”the proposal itself.”

NFU President Roger Johnson…

Cut #2  :15 OC:…”chopping block.”

The president also proposes cutting staff by an ‘unspecified number’ at various service centers, possibly including FSA and Extension Service offices, and rural development centers.  Karney…tape

Cut #3  :14 OC:…”in rural America.”

The president’s budget proposal for USDA also drew criticisms from Congress.

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