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Animals and Agriculture Hanging in there During the Big Chill

Animals and agriculture have held up well in the Carpinteria and Ojai Valley areas even with the hard freeze warnings this week.

Wind machines are blowing at night and that is keeping the cold air circulating. No major crop losses have been reported

Jen Corniuk with Trails Rides of Ojai stood next to her horses at the Ojai Coffee shop this morning and said they were in very cold temperatures before dawn because the water buckets had ice over the top.

The horses were covered with special blankets to keep them warm.

She rode over an hour from their ranch to town and it was time for a break.

“There is a blanket that is shaped for the horse. It’s fitted for the horse, and it’s strapped underneath. It’s like us wearing a jacket,” said Corniuk.

Growers with roadside stands had a selection of oranges, avocados and lemons for sale. No large quantities, but enough to handle passersby. The smaller stands often have the “honor” system for customers to leave cash for their fruit.

In Carpinteria, the Farm Cart on Carpinteria Ave. had a selection of oranges, tangerines, lettuce, kale, carrots and peppers from local fields and a farm near Buellton. The Shepherd family uses the spot for its daily harvest along with shipments to some restaurants and a spot at the Farmers Market. Customers were favoring the fresh citrus by the bag load.

The State Department of Agriculture says no major crop losses have been reported in the current wave of cold air, and many of the fruits are more mature and durable now that what we saw in the freeze of 2013 when losses were reported.

Farmers have also invested in wind machines where they need them to protect their crops.

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