Storms cause $130,000 in damage to Tecolote Farm

Last night’s whopper of a storm caused power outages, downed trees and some house fires caused by lightening strikes.

Out at Tecolote Farm on Decker Lane on the eastern edge of Austin, Katie and David Pitre are just starting to pick up the pieces of a circular storm that caused an estimated $130,000 in damages.

Tecolote Farm suffered an estimated $130,000 in damages from last night's farm. The farm's insurance won't cover much of the damage, the owners said. Contributed by Katie Pitre.

Tecolote Farm suffered an estimated $130,000 in damages from last night’s farm. The farm’s insurance won’t cover much of the damage, the owners said. Contributed by Katie Pitre.

From a note that Katie Pitre sent to her fellow farmers early on Monday:

Circular storm through here last night around midnight. Halves of 300 year old oak trees on the ground. Lightning hit some trees. Big branches on house roof. Half of barn roof gone, including a good portion of our solar array and rainwater gutters. Solar array was not yet insured. Thought barn was still insured but turns out not. Dang. Picking up pieces. Today was supposed to be our first harvest for Farmhouse delivery. Sorrel all destroyed though. Luckily people and animals all ok. Hope this storm missed y’all.

When I touched base with Pitre today, she was swamped trying to salvage what she could and talking with insurance companies about what is and isn’t insured, but she was able to send a photo of the barn with half of the roof and solar panels peeled back.

Tecolote sells both produce and meat to Austinites through one of the longest-running CSA programs in the country, but they also sell directly to chefs. You’ll remember that they had some serious water issues several years ago and, like all area farmers, also weather drought.

MORE: What does it really mean to ‘eat local’? Let’s ask the farmers

I’ll keep you posted about any additional details about the damage, as well as fundraising or rebuilding efforts.

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