In the Northeast, a wet autumn has become an 'apple-picking apocalypse'

<p>In the Northeast, a wet autumn has become an 'apple-picking apocalypse'</p><p></p><p>Farms are seeing as much as a 50% decline in business; ‘we work all year for this’</p><p>The “apple-picking apocalypse” is upon us. At least that’s how The New York Times is describing the situation for pick-your-own farms in New York State, which have suffered through two months of consecutive weekends marred partly or fully by rain. The farms, which typically attract visitors from New York City, depend heavily on Saturday and Sunday foot traffic during September and October, the prime-apple picking months. But the wet weather has curtailed things, with businesses reporting a drop in seasonal sales ranging from 25% to 50%, according to the Times. The situation isn’t confined to New York. Farms throughout the Northeast have also faced weather-related difficulties. Honey Pot Hill Orchards in Stow, Mass., told WBZ News in Boston that business was down 30% — and that was just at the end of September. Chelcie Martin, who helps run the farm, said the situation was “heartbreaking,” especially given all the effort that goes on during the off-season. “We work all year for this,” she told the news outlet. Potential customers to orchards in the Northeast are naturally none-too-happy about missing out on a favorite fall activity — at least judging from comments on social media, such as these: In New York, almost 11 inches of rain fell on key regions during the past two months, according to government data cited by the New York Times. That’s 33% higher than usual, but the issue is not just how much rain there’s been of late, but the fact the Friday-to-Sunday periods have been some of the soggiest days. The weekend of Sept. 29-Oct 1 was particularly bad. On Sept. 29, a record one-day rainfall of around 8 inches fell in New York City. Outlying areas were also affected by the heavy precipitation. The culprit behind the rains? Some are naturally pointing to global warming, saying it has disrupted normal weather patterns. The Guardian noted that heavy rain events have been on the rise in the Northeast since the 1950s, with “climate change the main cause of this.” Still, for some in the Northeast, the good news is that apple-picking season isn’t fully over. Some orchards are saying the picking will continue through mid-November. And when it comes to parts of New York State, the National Weather Service is forecasting a weekend reprieve of sorts, saying Saturday and Sunny will at least be “partly sunny.”</p>