"We used to produce 100 tons. Now it's hard for us to collect 10 tons," said Adrian Parlea, spokesman for the Forestry Department in the Romanian county of Mures, a major region for forest fruit supplies.
The dryness is best seen in small rivers and lakes around the region, with the water levels dropping to only a few centimeters (inches) in some cases.
Hydropower plants in Serbia, Bosnia and Macedonia have scaled down production because of the lack of water, and authorities say electricity will have to be imported as the result.
In Macedonia, officials have warned that even the supply of drinking water could be in jeopardy.
"The level of water in the lakes and rivers is very low, and it is possible that we'll be without drinking water," hydrologist Konstantin Ugrinski told local media. "That is why we call on people to use water extremely rationally, only for drinking and washing."
In Serbia, the Palic Lake in the north has been artificially filled with thousands of gallons of water from a river to save its fish and ecological system.
One of Bosnia's main rivers — Bosna — has turned into a "drainage channel, and entire animal and plant populations have disappeared," said Ballian.
In western Kosovo, the town of Prizren that is a UNESCO heritage site and the home to medieval Serb Orthodox Christian churches and Ottoman mosques, has seen the river Bistrica reduced to a trickle.
Abdyladi Krasniqi said, "In my 73 years, I do not remember the river being so low and the heat being as severe."
Back at the Sarajevo market, Nermina Hasanovic, 52, is selling eggs and a handful of vegetables from the small part of her garden that she has been able to water.
"They are so small and wrinkled. They look like they are already cooked. I'll probably end up feeding them to the cows," she said.
Somehow, as they did during the wars of the 1990s, Bosnians are using dry humor to keep their spirits up.
"We were wondering," Hasanovic said, "if the Americans will be able to grow something on Mars? Meanwhile, we will grow cactus. Can you eat cactus?"
Aida Cerkez, Irena Knezevic, Eldar Emric, Radul Radovanovic, Amer Cohadzic from Bosnia; Jovana Gec, Marko Drobnjakovic, Darko Vojinovic from Serbia; Veselin Toshkov from Bulgaria, Alison Mutler from Romania and Nebi Qena from Kosovo contributed.
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