May 2018

May 2018

Flying Pollen and Other News

Hey, hey its the third week of May and the pollen is flying in the Willamette Valley! Reports of the yellow clouds that are so important to our industry are dotting the landscape, especially over early crops like forage tall fescue and orchardgrass. And, if the favorable forecast holds true, the next few weeks will have much more of the same.

So how do the crops look? Generally, quite nice. This year’s weather has been very favorable to good crop establishment, minimal winter damage, and acceptable spring for spraying and fertilizing. There has been some field mice damage and rust issues, but the biggest concerns are regarding Poa annua and Poa trivialis contamination. Otherwise, grass crops seem to be on track to deliver good yields.

What about prompt and future markets? New crop purchasing seems to have started early, with a number of buyers already securing a portion of their needs of Gulf and proprietary ryegrasses, and maybe as important as the price, securing their places in line for new crop. Forward purchasing has been slow and steady. More buyers than sellers at this point. While minimal amounts of old crop exists, this forward booking activity has brought softness to the prompt price, as it moves more in line with new crop pricing.

Similar to Gulf, there is very little old crop forage tall fescue. Pricing has started to trickle down toward new crop pricing on both fawn and KY-31. Market activity on both new and old crop is pretty quiet as sellers and buyers await Missouri crop reports and early Oregon reports.

Turf-type tall fescue fields look good, although as mentioned above, some may have contamination issues. Pricing for new crop is likely still a month or so away. Buying activity is expected to be high. Similar to Gulf, getting a place in line will be more critical this year due to lack of carryover.

Crimson clover seems to finally find a spot that accommodates both buyers and sellers. Prompt and new crop purchases are active. Trading has also increased in the winter pea and other cover crop commodities including radish, vetch, rape, and clovers.

Get Covered Early

We have begun this season’s cover crop marketing, focusing on three leading products - Lowboy low-growing annual ryegrass, CCS 779 radish, and AU Merit hairy vetch. These are all uniquely and potentially powerful tools to aid your cover crop customers. Be sure to learn about them and book your needs early enough. Visit lowboyryegrass.com, ccs779radish.com and aumeritvetch.com to learn more.

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