A cool spring is delaying green-up for hayfields and pastures in parts of North Carolina.

“Ordinarily, we’d see fescue start coming on this time of year, but it really hasn’t warmed up enough for that yet this spring,” says Al Cochran, North Carolina State University Extension director in Martin County. “We had some freezing nights during the last week of March, and we had a few nighttime lows in the 30s as well. It’s a lot different than last year when it was warm early on and just about everything was ahead of schedule.”

Even so, the slow start isn’t likely to put much, if any, pressure on area hay supplies. “Most people were able to find the hay they needed locally. And there still seems to be plenty of hay around. It was a very good year for hay production – both grass hay and perennial peanut hay – last year.”

Cochran reminds area growers and livestock producers to mark their calendars for the Eastern North Carolina Hay Day, scheduled for June 25 at the Tar River Ranch near Greenville. The event will include presentations on weed management in pastures, forage production management and state beef industry updates. There will also be field demonstrations of mowers, balers, tedders and conditioners, along with summer forage plot tours and displays from agribusinesses offering hay production services and products.

To contact Cochran, call 252-789-4370 or email al_cochran@ncsu.edu.

For other stories of interest, read:

Converting Pastures To Crabgrass

Perennial Peanuts Are Suitable Beef Supplement

Bale Peanuts, Corn For Hay With Care