Harvest time for a family-run flower farm after a dry, hot season

Local News

HAMLIN COUNTY, S.D. (KELO) – This summer’s drought has impacted farmers of all kinds. For those that had the means to do so, more irrigation had to be done. That was the case for a family-run flower farm near Castlewood, South Dakota.

Early in the morning, you can find Jessie Ruml and her four daughters harvesting their 65 varieties of flowers at Pixie Acres Flower Farm near Castlewood, South Dakota.

“Flowers don’t like to be cut in the heat of the day because then they tend to wilt,” Ruml said.

The drought this summer impacted farmers all over the state, including Ruml.

“June kind of through us for a loop,” Ruml said. “So, usually in June, it’s like 60’s, 70’s, with rain. And it was three weeks of 90 degrees and no rain. I think we got a quarter-inch of rain the entire month of June. So we had to keep the field watered to keep the seedlings going.”

Ruml says they used 77,000 gallons of water in the month of June alone.

“We’re very fortunate. Some of the farmers don’t have irrigation and we can do it on a smaller scale with drip irrigation,” Ruml said. “So we feel very fortunate that we were even able to keep our crops alive because a lot of the farmers, you know, they can’t do that, so it’s hard.”

Pixie Acres Flower Farm only started four years ago, and though this year had its challenges, Ruml has stayed optimistic.

“It’s just farming. I mean, each year’s a little different,” Ruml said. “We’re thankful we haven’t had any hail this year or strong winds that have toppled our crop. So I can’t say that it’s the hardest one because it could always be worse.”

We first took you to Pixie Acres Flower Farm in June to learn about their beginnings and the love that grows on the farm. You can find that story by clicking here.

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