Wetter-than-usual weather this spring has set back ryegrass production in most parts of Mississippi in recent months. Early season production of warm-season grasses could be crimped as well, says Rocky Lemus, forage specialist with Mississippi State University.
“We had a cold winter, so the ryegrass wasn’t growing well, “ says Lemus. “We lost somewhere around 30% of our grazing potential from January through March. Then, when we got into spring, things turned wet, and producers had a tough time trying to get their animals onto pastures without tearing them up.”
The extremely wet conditions are also keeping producers from haying or making baleage on their ryegrass fields. “By the time things dry out, the ryegrass is going to be very mature in a lot of places. That’s likely to affect quality.”
A delay in bermudagrass and bahiagrass first cuttings is likely in many parts of the state, he adds. “It’s still a little early to tell. With so much wet weather, we might see more weed pressure than we normally do, and we could also see some additional problems with diseases like leaf spot.” Producers should also watch for increases in insect pressure; the bermudagrass stem maggot is one pest to watch for.
(Source – http://www.farms.com/news/wet-spring-sets-back-mississippi-forages-76039.aspx)