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It’s Not Easy Being Green in the Finger Lakes

On Wednesday I headed to Middlesex, NY to view some of the damage caused by the torrential downpours that we have been having here in the Finger Lakes this week. April will go down as being the wettest April on record in the Finger Lakes.

As I viewed the swollen streams and low lying flooded valleys, I couldn’t help but think of how much precious top soil has been washed from the farm fields – soil that eventually ends up in the low lands beside the streams or in the Finger Lakes themselves. The color of the flooded streams around Middlesex, NY was a chocolate brown.

‘Bein Green’ was a popular song written by Joe Raposo in 1970 for the first season of Sesame Street and was performed by Kermit the Frog. Kermit sings “it’s not easy being green” because he was of different color. The land surrounding the Finger Lakes is richly diverse; agricultural land on which wheat, corn, soybeans, and hay is grown by the dairy farmers for their animals and as a cash crop, land where strawberries, potatoes, cabbages, squash, and pumpkins are grown for human consumption. On some of the more hilly portions of the land, fruit trees (apple, cherry, pear) are grown as well as grapes for the wine industry. Most of the steepest parts of the hills next to the Finger Lakes are still wooded, but even here man has chosen to build his dream home and cut down the trees. And once the trees are cut down, there is nothing to prevent a huge run-off of muddy water like what we experienced this week. It’s like Kermit’s song says; “It’s Not Easy being Green” in the Finger Lakes.

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