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Ag Weather Impacts
by Dennis Hull, click here for bio

Program: Ag Weather Impact
Date: May 11, 2018

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As we end the second week of May across the Inland Northwest, we are seeing wheat entering the reproductive stage and first cutting of alfafa being gathered. Yesterday, I talked with Randy Bracher of Bracher Farms. They grow wheat, hay, grass and corn seed near north of Pendleton near Holdman and Helix. I asked Randy how the soil moisture is holding up with wheat yet to enter the critical heading, flowering and filling stages.

Randy: Soil moisture for the most part is good. Down in the Cold Springs-Holdman area it’s been drier in the 6 to 10 inch rainfall and Helix is 16 inch rainfall, and we’ve actually caught more storms down in the lower end than we’ve had in the upper country.

Going to no-till has helped on the sandy soils.

Randy: It has been a great improvement for our operations. Can’t disturb much because of the wind and crazy weather events that we have, we have to be really careful on what we do to the ground.

Between now and the normal early July harvest start, there are some weather worrys for Randy:

Randy: We don’t need any 95 degree plus weather for the next 2 to 3 weeks. And then eastern Oregon is notorious for those Memorial Day weekend thunderstorms that bring a lot of hail, so that’s always a big concern of ours.

Randy did get about ¾ inch of rain on his alfalfa cutting earlier this week, so instead of baling:

Randy: It’ll generally just get green chopped so we can get it off the field quicker and get the second cutting growing.

My thanks to Randy Bracher of Bracher Farms.

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