Rain boosts optimism for Wheatbelt cropsTuesday July 23, 2013 - 13:30 EST
An eastern Wheatbelt shire in Western Australia says recent rainfall has been enormously beneficial to crops and put many growers back on track for an average season.
A prolonged winter dry spell in June and early July sparked fears for the future of the harvest.
However, falls a week and a half ago, in excess of 50 millimetres in areas around Corrigin, have led to renewed optimism among many growers.
Bruce Rock farmer and local shire president Stephen Strange says the rain has reinvigorated crops in the area and further south.
"I would say it could have been a devastating loss and a huge blow to the Wheatbelt, to a point now where we're looking at an average season," he said.
"With some moisture this week and a good finish, it could even be above average.
"Within 10 days they've just turned around unbelievably.
"They look rich, they've cut right into all that moisture, they've got the nutrition there and even top-ups are happening now."
© ABC 2013
More breaking news
Queensland's Carpentaria is still flooding due to a stubborn Ex-Tropical Cyclone Alfred and will only slowly dry out as the system moves away.
Australia's energy operator has found power plant failures contributed to the unprecedented pressure on the New South Wales electricity grid during this month's heatwave.
Flying fox rescuers in Sydney are experiencing "the worst season ever" as a record number of bats get caught and injured in nets used to protect backyard fruit trees.