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Expecting a promising harvest this year

FARMERS in Western Victoria have had a good season this year, even with the Bureau of Meteorology recording a warmer and dryer than average October and predicting the same pattern for the next two months.

Warracknabeal based farmer Marshall Rodda recorded  16mm of rain over the weekend, and said that while that wouldn’t affect the crops, it would slow down the hay for a week, predicting that the wind this week would dry things up.

“We’ve had early rains, a bit of a dry finish, but we’ll still have some pretty handy crops,” he said.

Hopetoun farmer Anthony Schache recorded 17 mm of rain this last week, saying “up until now it’s been dry and this last rain won’t have any benefit for our crop.”

“We had a good start. We had good subsoil moisture from last year, but the last six to eight weeks have been really challenging since we’ve had a lot of frost,” he said.

While some of the lentils, wheat, and barley were frosted, there was good quality hay that could be sold as well as cereals above average, he said.

“We’re a lot luckier than farmers up north.”

The rainfall over the weekend has improved the quality of crops in Rupanyup, said Rupanyup farmer Andrew Weidemann, who recorded 17-20mm across his farm over the weekend.

“The crops at this stage are on track to be above average this year, things are looking pretty promising for the Rupanyup area,” he said.

“We’ve so far avoided any serious frosts which have been concerning us up until now. Overall the season’s been quite good and promising yields ahead of us hopefully.”

Mr Weidemann said,  “we like to make sure we maximise the season throughout the Wimmera and Southern Mallee to improve the financial aspects for the whole region at the moment.”

“Australia is on the cusp of a very low production year of grain, Victoria is probably the state likely to produce almost the largest amounts of grain other than Western Australia.”

The Bureau of Meteorology found that Dimboola received  14mm of rainfall last week, while, Donald had 20, and Jeparit had 18.