Farmer hails netting

By HELEN JACK

GARRY Green could hear it coming, roaring, like the sound of a mob of cattle being driven.

"And over the road the paddocks were just like a lake, just one huge sheet of water," Mr Green, co-ordinator of Greenridge Hydroponics Farm near Casino, said of Tuesday's storm.

"This storm wasn't as bad as the last one.

"The last one was in mid-2002 and it flattened one of our greenhouses bending the steel posts flat onto the ground."

Mr Green's 22,500 potted Lebanese cucumber plants are protected under eight-and-a-half square metres of hail netting.

"It saved all the plants otherwise we would have been wiped out," he said.

"It can hold two to three tonnes of hail for every 10 square metres."

In one spot Mr Green estimated half-a-tonne of hail hanging within a section of netting.

Also affected by the storm were Chris and Trisha Gilbert.

Their orchard trees were laden with fruit but within 20 minutes their whole season's crop was on the ground, hidden by leaves stripped during Tuesday's storm.

"We are still in shock," Mr Gilbert said from his orchard at Rappville. "I've never seen hail like it."



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