Belle Glade – Palm Beach County’s vegetable farming industry is largely recovered from Hurricane Irma, which ripped through the area in September, destroying early plantings and delaying the plantings of sweet corn, green beans and other holiday favorites.
Florida citrus growers were harder hit and could take years to recover. On Sept. 10, Irma moved through the center of the state pounding Florida’s major citrus producing regions with up to 110 mph winds and 15 inches of rain.
The hurricane blew fruit off the trees and caused widespread tree damage. A Florida Citrus Mutual survey of growers conducted after Irma pegged total fruit loss at almost 60 percent with some reports of 100 percent fruit loss in the Southwest part of the state. Since then, fruit has continued to drop and some root systems have rotted.
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