The 2nd cutting Timothy harvest will begin this week, starting in the South Basin and moving North in the next week or two followed shortly by the Kittitas Valley. The weather has been consistent over the last month. Because of this the Timothy looks outstanding. We should see better quality from 2011's 2nd cutting Timothy hay than we did in 2010.
Stable weather conditions have been good for the Alflafa harvest. With little to no rain predicted in the Columbia River Basin, growers will be able to put up some nice Alfalfa hay in the next few weeks. We are seeing better quality in the late 2nd and 3rd cuttingsa as the North Basin has finished with it's 2nd cutting harvest and the South Basin gets rolling on 3rd cutting.
Klamath Falls and Eastern Oregon have finished up with the majority of 2nd cutting Alfalfa hay harvest. Growers saw very little rain during cutting and baling activities. The heavier dews, however, have led to more bleaching of the hay. Christmas Valley growers have also seen great harvest weather. The 2nd cutting harvest has started with about a third of the fields cut and baled. As harvest got a late start, only a few growers will try for a 3rd cutting this year.
We expect limited supplies of top quality Alfalfa this year. Poor weather conditions during 1st and 2nd cutting along with demand from US Dairies will put a lot of pressure on inventories and pricing. We are happy to see the 2nd and 3rd cutting Alfalfa harvest come in with good quality. As the weather remains warm and dry the Alfalfa harvest should finish out strong.
The Straw harvest is also benefiting from the good weather we've been having. The quality of Straw coming out of Oregon will have a lot to do with the weather over the next week. The Fescue and Perennial Rye harvest began over the last week in the Centeral and Northern parts of the Willamette Valley. If the weather stays dry, growers should be able to put up good quality Rye and Fescue Straw this year.