Across the PNW growers have begun 2nd cutting harvest of their Timothy and Alfalfa fields. For the most part the weather has cooperated with only a few areas experiencing showers.
The Timothy hay harvest in both the Columbia Basin and Kittitas Valley has yielded some very nice quality hay. Growers are now preparing for 2nd cutting growth. Fields are being irrigated the the cooler summer weather will be good for Timothy growth. It seems that last year's problems with weather conditions won't be an issue this year.
Alfalfa growers haven't been quite as fortunate as Timothy growers. With half of the fileds in the Southern Columbia basin cut and baled, harvest is going strong. Unfortunately some scattered rain and heavy dews have caused some problems. The fields that were harvested early have tested well but the later fields are testing lower. We should see a good crop of green #1 Alfalfa, however Premium Alfalfa inventory will be limited.
In Oregon, the 1st cutting harvest is almost complete. Most areas have gotten their hay baled and stacked. Christmas Valley is lagging behind with only half of it's fields cut and baled. The cooler temperatures made grass control difficult and we don't expect to see a lot of export quality hay from the Christmas Valley. With such a late start to the season, Christmas Valley growers will not take a 3rd cutting. The quality from the Klamath Falls area should be very good despite the showers that fell over much of the area. Oregon should begin their 2nd cuttings at the end of July in the earliest fields.
Export quality hay from Utah will be limited as well. Cool and wet weather created difficulties during harvest. These conditions have led to problems controling grass in many fields. The late 1st cutting and early 2nd cutting received rain early last week as well. We expect most of the 2nd cutting Alfalfa fields to be cut early this week. The weather looks promising for harvest activites this week for a nice 2nd cutting Alfalfa crop from Utah.