University of Kentucky agriculture meteorologist calls rainy spring a mixed blessing for Kentucky farmers

Republished from WEKU.

Lots of rain the past two weeks is a mixed blessing for Kentucky farmers. That’s according to Matt Dixon, the senior meteorologist in the University of Kentucky’s Agriculture Weather Center. He said hay pasture growth has been fantastic.

“This year, we’ve had plenty of rainfall, but we’ve also had mild temperatures in place. Hay yields, if we go back to 2023, they weren’t necessarily what we liked them to be at. At that time of year when we’re looking at that first cut, it was a cooler spring.”

Dixon said this April was the 10th warmest in more than 125 years, but hay farmers need four consecutive days of dry weather to make their first cut. He said corn planting is slightly behind the five-year average, but soybeans are slightly ahead, and he predicts the warm winter will be good for farmers growing fruit.

“I know 2023, we didn’t have much of any peaches grown locally in the bluegrass state. That’s going to be different in 2024. I was out at some orchards a couple of weeks ago, and the crop looks like it’s thriving.”

Dixon said the cloudy, wet spring has been good for slugs and snails, which is a problem for farmers, but added too much rain beats a drought any season.

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Originally published by WEKU.

Republished with permission.