By Clint Thompson
Applications to grow hemp in Alabama this year are “slowly but surely” moving forward, says Katelyn Kesheimer, Auburn University Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist.
“I got approved for a couple and I’m still waiting on a couple more to get some plants in the ground. It’s a little bit later than I would have liked. We are making progress,” Kesheimer said. “Slowly but surely. I hope to have all of my approvals for my research done and approved by the end of the month so I can have plants in the ground within two weeks at the latest.”
Green Plants By July 31
Kesheimer said farmers need to have green hemp plants up and out of the ground by July 31. She estimates that if growers plant their seed by the second or third week in July, they should be fine as far as the plant emerging by the end of the month.
“If you’re planting from seed, which a lot of people are, then you have to have them up and emerged by July 31. My guess would be if it got held up further, they might make some exceptions for people who were approved really late,” Kesheimer said. “But if you were approved in May and you don’t have seed or green plants by the end of July, they’re probably not going to cut you any slack.”
According to the Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries (ADAI), if you are a first-time outdoor grower and do not have green plants up and growing by that date, ADAI will need to know why and what immediate plans you have to grow as this delayed planting will affect your crop in 2020.
All growers will also be required to respond to an emailed status report request as to growing activities by Aug. 1.