Vog wreaks havoc on Big Island farms - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Vog wreaks havoc on Big Island farms

Dan Wegner Dan Wegner

By Stephanie Lum - bio | email

KAU, BIG ISLAND (KHNL) -- For twenty five years, Dan Wegner's protea farm on the Big Island has been thriving. His business "Aloha Proteas" is one of the largest distributors of the flower in the state.

"We do some local sales most of our flowers are shipped to the mainland," said Dan Wegner.

Lately, business has been bad. Wegner blames the thick vog covering Ka'u and his farm.

He says it's been this way for the past four months ever since the vent opened up at Halemau'mau crater and it's killing his plants.

"They've all been hit by vog. The sulfur dioxide gets on the leaves and sits there and as soon as we get dew or rain it turns it into sulfuric acid and just burns it. It's like the acid battery that you have in your car. You wouldn't go dump that on your favorite plant," Wegner said.

Signs of the damaging effects of vog can be seen throughout his eleven acre farm.

Wegner estimates ninety percent of his crops are dead and close to a half a million dollars lost.

The only flowers left standing are his King Proteas but it's not enough to fill the orders and keep his business alive.

"I'm trying to pay my bills. I don't even have enough income from the farm now to pay my farm bills and it's going more that way every month and I can survive this for a little while but I need help", said Wegner.

Help has come in the form of vog disaster loans but Wegner says he has no money to pay back the loan considering the current state of his farm.

He and other local farmers are urging the government to offer grants to help them recover their losses.

Job Link 8 Featured Jobs
  • Hawaii News Now headlinesNewsMore>>

  • Jason Momoa is home — and making a splash over Aquaman trailer

    Jason Momoa is home — and making a splash over Aquaman trailer

    Friday, July 20 2018 6:37 PM EDT2018-07-20 22:37:43 GMT
    The trailer for the highly-anticipated Aquaman film is set to release a trailer Saturday. (Image: WARNER BROTHERS)The trailer for the highly-anticipated Aquaman film is set to release a trailer Saturday. (Image: WARNER BROTHERS)
    The trailer for the highly-anticipated Aquaman film is set to release a trailer Saturday. (Image: WARNER BROTHERS)The trailer for the highly-anticipated Aquaman film is set to release a trailer Saturday. (Image: WARNER BROTHERS)

    Jason Momoa is back home  and excited for fans to dive into an Aquaman announcement. 

    More >>

    Jason Momoa is back home  and excited for fans to dive into an Aquaman announcement. 

    More >>
  • Branson mourns for 17 killed in sinking of packed duck boat

    Branson mourns for 17 killed in sinking of packed duck boat

    Friday, July 20 2018 7:26 AM EDT2018-07-20 11:26:30 GMT
    Friday, July 20 2018 6:34 PM EDT2018-07-20 22:34:09 GMT
    (Nathan Papes/The Springfield News-Leader via AP). Emergency responders work at Table Rock Lake after a deadly boat accident in Branson, Mo., Thursday, July 19, 2018. A sheriff in Missouri said a tourist boat has apparently capsized on the lake, leavin...(Nathan Papes/The Springfield News-Leader via AP). Emergency responders work at Table Rock Lake after a deadly boat accident in Branson, Mo., Thursday, July 19, 2018. A sheriff in Missouri said a tourist boat has apparently capsized on the lake, leavin...
    Dive teams will resume searching for five people still missing after a tourist boat capsized and sank in a southwestern Missouri lake.More >>
    Dive teams will resume searching for five people still missing after a tourist boat capsized and sank in a southwestern Missouri lake.More >>
  • Suspect confesses in killing of Olympic figure skater

    Suspect confesses in killing of Olympic figure skater

    Friday, July 20 2018 3:16 AM EDT2018-07-20 07:16:16 GMT
    Friday, July 20 2018 6:30 PM EDT2018-07-20 22:30:41 GMT
    (AP Photo/David J. Phillip, File). FILE - In this Feb. 16, 2018 file photo, figure skater Denis Ten, of Kazakhstan, reacts as his score is posted following his performance in the men's short program figure skating, in the Gangneung Ice Arena at the 201...(AP Photo/David J. Phillip, File). FILE - In this Feb. 16, 2018 file photo, figure skater Denis Ten, of Kazakhstan, reacts as his score is posted following his performance in the men's short program figure skating, in the Gangneung Ice Arena at the 201...
    Kazakh media says authorities detained one suspect in the killing of Olympic figure skating medalist Denis Ten and are searching for another.More >>
    Kazakh media says authorities detained one suspect in the killing of Olympic figure skating medalist Denis Ten and are searching for another.More >>
Powered by Frankly