By John Maier
When you’re enjoying a Rogue whiskey a year from now, think back to today. There’s a good chance that whiskey will have been made with the Dare™ spring malting barley that was just planted at our farm in Tygh Valley, Oregon.
We’re about halfway done planting the 100 acres of Dare™ barley. The remaining acres still need some work – plowing to break up the soil, discing to break up the clumps, and harrowing to smooth everything over. If things keep moving along the way they have, we could be finished any day now. If that happens, we’ll be done planting a month earlier than we were last year. That’s good for the barley. An early planting means the crop has more time to grow before the hot summer weather kicks in. That will produce higher yields, healthier barley and better tasting malts and spirits.
It’s ironic that the dry weather helping us move along is also worrisome for the Risk™ winter barley we planted in the fall. Barley needs cool temps and some rain this time of year. If the rain doesn’t come, we’re moving the irrigators into place – just in case.