According to the weekly Alabama Crop Progress and Condition Report from the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), temperatures thus far in February have generally been on par with historic averages.
Total rainfall for the month has ranged from 0.8 inches in Geneva County to 6.5 inches in Blount County. According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, 12 percent of the state had abnormally dry conditions, which compares to 17 percent at the beginning of the month.
The NASS report notes winter pastures and cool season forages are in good condition, as mild weather conditions and adequate precipitation in the planting and growing season helped them to jump start and maintain. But, the high prices of fertilizer have kept many producers from applying it to winter grazing as they normally would this time of year. Cattle have remained in fair to good condition as producers continue to supplement winter grazing with hay and feed.
Seasonal weather has allowed for fertilizer applications on wheat, oats and rye along with some herbicide applications. Wheat has emerged but needs fertilizer and warmer weather to be profitable.
They also note that strawberry conditions were mostly good, as while the early February freeze did damage the crop, the crop is expected to recover by harvest.
Otherwise, farmers continued field activities in preparation for spring planting, but the rising input prices are a concern for many heading into the spring.