Starlight harvest

Pea harvest goes well past midnight in this field along a county road northeast of Milton-Freewater recently. These Smith Frozen Foods harvesters, working here in an HT Rea Farms field, go 24 hours a day because the fresh green peas are continually maturing, according to the farmer, Nathan Rea. To get everything harvested at peak tenderness, they need to keep going. When the days are hot like last week, the pea plants start to shut down. The heat increases the pressure to harvest the crop and move on to the next field. This year is a bumper pea crop, Rea said. Yields are higher than expected, so some peas are being left in the field and will be harvested dry as “feed peas.”

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