WELCOME DROP: Sharon Staples, from Precious Plants in Lismore, takes shelter from the rain beneath a trailing kalanchoe that is
WELCOME DROP: Sharon Staples, from Precious Plants in Lismore, takes shelter from the rain beneath a trailing kalanchoe that is

Rain welcome, but is it enough?

By Charles Wood

IF YOU think it's been raining cats and dogs, you're right and wrong. It's been enough to make garden lovers jump for joy, but in most cases it's been more of an inconvenience than of substantial use.

Coastal areas have taken the brunt of downpours in the 24 hours up until 9am yesterday, with Byron Bay weighing in at 63 millimetres, Ballina 48 millimetres, but Lismore recorded only 14 millimetres.

In the catchment area falls have only boosted Rocky Creek Dam by 10mm, bringing its capacity to 62.6 per cent.

But the NRMA has been swamped with calls for assistance, mainly due to flat batteries from drivers leaving their lights on.

At Ballina Airport rain and low cloud forced Rex to cancel its morning service from Sydney. South-bound passengers were accommodated on Virgin's Sydney service later in the day, and the rain is also causing problems for the sugar cane industry.

This is the first year of the 'Green Harvest', where growers aren't permitted to burn their crops. The harvest and crush was due to begin on Monday and now it won't get under way until Thursday at the earliest.

The wet weather is putting a smile on some people's faces. Staff at El Gas in Lismore are selling twice as many gas heaters as they were a week ago and they've been forced to order additional stock to keep up with demand.

For Sharon Staples from Precious Plants in Lismore it's a godsend: "The plants are so much happier and healthier with rain water as opposed to tap water, it's given me time to catch up on bookwork."



LIST: What's open, what's closed on Anzac Day

LIST: What's open, what's closed on Anzac Day

Supermarkets, bottle shops and restaurants in your town

Thousands gather for dawn services

Thousands gather for dawn services

From babies to great grandparents, all were there to pay respects

How can council's fix its $1.6 million black hole?

How can council's fix its $1.6 million black hole?

Councillors argue over what to cut to get books in the back

Local Partners