On Craven Smith’s farm in Gibsonville, hurricane preparation takes a lot of planning. There’s only so much he can do, he said, and as he cleans up debris on his property this week, he and his workers are trying to make up for lost business.

“It's a wash up,” Smith said. “They will not do another Family Weekend, and then in the retail business, you never gain a Saturday back.”

Smith is the owner of Smith Farms, which grows fruit, vegetables and flowers. The farm is a vendor within the Authentically Alamance Farmers Market network — servicing Elon, Burlington and Mebane. His farm also provides vegetables to restaurants such as Michelle’s Kitchen and Table and Da Vinci’s Table. Smith said when people cancel reservations and catering orders, it creates a loss of sales for his farm and its suppliers.

“It causes a chain reaction,” Smith said. “Through it all, it's great to support local small businesses, and we try to do the same. Part of our suppliers and different things we try to buy are local instead of bigger corporations off the West Coast, we just try to keep everything local. The lifeblood of the industry is local.”

Smith said his end-of-season corn, cantaloupe and watermelon harvests were completely wiped out due to the rain, and his tomato crops suffered damage as well but will likely be fine. Fall growth focuses mainly on pumpkins and mums, but he said those were harvested and put under a shelter before the storm. Smith and his workers are spending this week putting out a fall display at the Smith Vegetable Barn. He said the damage is frustrating, yet he’s fortunate.

“On the other hand, you have to look at Florida,” Smith said. “When you think it's bad, it's worse somewhere else. You just overlook it and hope for the best and expect the worst.”

Clark Norman is also a vendor at the farmers market and the co-owner of Rodwell Roots, a specialty flower farm located in Mebane. He said all of the damage his farm experienced was caused by the wind, and it may take a while to see what’s been affected.

“We’ll notice more things, especially stems that have been affected or heads of flowers that maybe got weighed down and aren’t coming back,” Norman said. “That will hopefully give us a good indication of things that are going to rebound or not. It wasn't all that much, but at the same time, it could be a very subtle wind damage that just crooks and makes things a little less clean and straight.”

The most notable damage was losing eight rows of sunflowers, which had about 400 in each row. Norman said losing over 3,000 of some of his most popular flowers was frustrating.

“They were the most mature plants, but they still couldn't be cut before the hurricane because they weren't ready,” Norman said.

Norman said the only business opportunity he missed out on was the downtown Mebane market that takes place on Saturday mornings. 

“It was very fortunate,” Norman said. “It goes to show that some things can sustain winds, and it all depends on what direction they come from. We’re very, very lucky.”

The Authentically Alamance Farmers Market in Elon will take place from 3 to 6 p.m. on Thursday afternoons until November. It is located in the Elon Community Church parking lot.