Early frost hits Central Highlands crops
WITH the sorghum harvest in full swing, many growers across the Central Highlands are seeing first-hand the damage frost has done.
Mark Kemp of Yungaba Station, Capella, said frost set in two weeks earlier than ever before, in May this year.
"We have had damage in two paddocks," Mr Kemp said.
"One of the paddocks we had 50% damage and in the other we had 20% damage."
Growing sorghum for 12 years, Mr Kemp said his property was in a frost prone area and that he did his best to plant accordingly.
He said recent frost did not contribute to the damage of his crop.
"Frost in the last week hasn't done any damage because the sorghum has already set," Mr Kemp said.
"Once you get close to harvest it doesn't affect it.
"We are finishing harvest in the next couple of days."
Sorghum is fetching about $274 a tonne.
"That's a good price but it was higher a few months ago," he said. "It's higher than the long term average."
Local agronomist Graham Spackman said some areas were more prone to frost.
"Around Capella and Clermont tend to get more frost and the lower lying areas are particularly susceptible," Mr Spackman said.
"Harvesting across to Central Highlands should be finished in two to three weeks."