Constant rain brings woes for East Texas yards

Constant rain brings woes for East Texas yards
Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - August has seen more rain than normal for East Texans.

According to the Angelina County Airport weather monitoring system, Lufkin has seen 7 inches of rain this month which is almost double the average for the month.

Driving around Angelina County, anyone can see that yards have taken a hit with many of them looking more like jungles than manicured yards. The rain is hurting lawn care services. David Yarborough owns Affordable Lawn Care and has seen his business drop by 50 percent this month.

"This is the wettest August I have seen," Yarborough said. "We usually have 60 -65 yards a week. Right now we are doing 30. We are trying to catch up. You have impatient people sometimes that want to be first when we start back up and where that hurts us is that they may go to other services."

Yarborough said the lack of work is hurting his bottom line as well.

"It cannot rain from 8 am -2 pm and then come a flood at 3 pm  to 5 pm and you are basically rained out," Yarborough said.

Yarborough is hoping the rain will let up and he can get back into yards. He is also warning people to be careful when working in the tall grass right now. While working on one property on the west side of Lufkin, Yarborough and his crew ran into a copperhead. He said it is easy to run into poisonous snakes right now.

"You need to pay attention to where you step," Yarborough said. "It might not be a copperhead it could be a water moccasin. they love where it's wet."

Angelina Agriculture Extension Agent Cary Sims is monitoring yards across the county and he is concerned about more than just tall grass.

"All of our plants, trees, gardens, shrubs and pastures appreciate this rain," Sims said. "The problem is too much rain, too much moisture we're going to see some fungus problems."

According to Sims, the fungus normally appears in yards that are well maintained and fertilized but this year he expects for a lot of yards to see a fungal problem.

Sims is also concerned over the fall Army worm. The caterpillar is common in East Texas but has been seen more over the last few years and is becoming a major problem for landowners.

"It will march across like an army; across your lawn, across your hay meadow eating all your grass," Sims said.

As much as there is concern for what is going wrong from the rain, Sims said there is some positive things happening.

"The water bills are low for the homeowners right now," SIms said. "We have refilled our stock tanks. We have really put a lot of moisture down into our soil profile for trees and other deep rooted plants."

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