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Farmland, grazing rental rates rise


By Jessica Domel

Texas farmers paid more to rent pasture and crop land over the past year, according to a new report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Pasture rent

Farmers in northeast Texas paid the most to rent pasture land with an average of $14 per acre. That’s up 50 cents over 2017.

Renting pasture land in the Trans-Pecos region cost the least at $1.20 an acre, on average. That’s down a dime from 2017.

Pasture rent rates in the Coastal Bend increased the most over the past two years. Cost per acre in that region was up $1.20.

South Texas pasture rent rates declined the most in the state, falling from $5.80 per acre in 2017 to $5.40 per acre in 2019.

The statewide average is up 20 cents to $6.80 per acre.

Irrigated rent

The statewide average paid to rent irrigated crop land rose $5 over the past two years to $92 per acre.

Rental rates in northeast Texas rose the most, $10.50, to $61.50 per acre.

But despite the rise, farmers in that area did not pay the most to rent irrigated land in Texas.

That distinction went to farmers in the Northern High Plains where the cost to rent irrigated crop land averaged $110 an acre.

That’s up $6 from 2017.

Farmers in the Cross Timbers paid the least to rent irrigated crop land this year with the average per acre price coming in at $45 an acre.

That’s $8 per acre lower than two years ago—the largest rental rate decline in the state.

Dryland

Non-irrigated crop land rose, on average, $2 per acre statewide to $30 an acre.

Farmers in the Coastal Bend paid the most at $62 per acre, while farmers in the Cross Timbers paid the least at $17.50 per acre.

The Southern High Plains saw the highest rise in rent payments for non-irrigated crop land this year.

The average rent there was up $4 an acre to $36.50 an acre.

Crop land rental rates—both irrigated and non-irrigated—include acres cut for hay.

No regions saw a decline in dryland rental rates this year. Data was incomplete and unreported for southeast Texas and the Trans-Pecos regions.

The data for the Cash Rents survey was collected by NASS February through July of this year.

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