SEASON CHANGE: Marto Farms owner Andrew Martens completed the final watermelon harvest for the season and now it's time for zucchinis.
SEASON CHANGE: Marto Farms owner Andrew Martens completed the final watermelon harvest for the season and now it's time for zucchinis.

Grower eager for return to normality

WATERMELON season is officially over for Marto Farms with the last crops harvested on Monday.

Now as the weather shifts and becomes cooler the focus falls to zucchini until watermelon season restarts in November.

Owner of Marto Farm Andrew Martens said a big struggle was predicting how much to plant each week amid coronavirus implications.

Mr Martens said the growers hadn’t expected to be hit so hard by COVID-19.

“With the coronavirus it has been less busy, we haven’t had the same volume we normally do,” Mr Martens said.

“We have cut the size of planting back because COVID-19 shut the restaurants and cafes and that’s a fair whack of our business.

“It is weird though because we always say the same amount of people are living whether COVID-19 is here or not but the sales change, I don’t know why.”

Mr Martens said originally they felt the effects overnight and were just starting to increase their crops again.

“It was pretty much an overnight decision when everything shut and it effected us pretty quickly,” he said.

“Sales slowed down and it seems to be increasing one week but then it’s not the next.

“I think it will start to improve on the weekend when places are allowed to open with 10 people.

“When we didn’t know the impacts we cut the numbers of our planting right down but now we are sort of coming back up to normal, whether it is right or wrong who knows.”

Mr Martens said he hoped people would continue to look into their own backyard after restrictions eased and not lose the local focus.



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