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  • Calendar says it’s spring: Ready for grazing season?

  • Even though it’s winter, there’s still plenty of pasture work to be done

  • Summer grazing is in full swing (but it’s not too early to think winter)

All About Grazing Results

Soil quality and pasture management

Thursday, October 29, 2009

A small farm livestock owner recently asked me about the benefit of pasture aeration and the application of fertilizer and lime. To answer the question, I had to do some review of studies that investigated pasture aeration and fertilization. That started me thinking about soil quality, pasture condition and the effect that pasture management might […]

Plan ahead for winter feeding

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Winter is here, are you ready? The single largest expense of keeping livestock is winter-feeding costs. Livestock owners can reduce and minimize the cost with a little planning. It sounds strange, but feeding low quality hay now might be a good strategy to reduce winter-feed costs. The reason to feed poor quality hay now is […]

A roundup of 4-H news for the week of Oct. 1, 2009

Thursday, October 1, 2009

BARNESVILLE, Ohio — The Barnesville Progressive Home Helpers held a meeting Sept. 19 at the Main Street United Methodist Church in Barnesville. The fair was discussed. This was the last meeting of the club year. The new club year will begin Oct. 10 with a meeting at 10 a.m. at the church and an election […]

Should you feed hay now or wait?

Thursday, October 1, 2009

There are a limited number of days left in our growing season here in Ohio and the opportunity to increase your dry matter as stored feed or stockpiled feed before winter is winding down quickly. The plants your livestock graze the next few weeks will impact those plants’ growth not only now, but possibly next […]

Were you prepared for the dry spell?

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Earlier in the year there were several articles in this column addressing planning ahead for the possibility of drought. In April, Mark Sulc warned us to “Plan now for the summer slump,” which is the time of slower growth we experience every summer. In his article he addressed the importance of not overgrazing your pastures, […]

Fall is a critical time period for cool season perennial forages

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Fall is one of the most crucial time periods for our cool season pastures. The most important activity a livestock producer should be doing to help the pastures survive winter and remain productive next year is to avoid overgrazing. Why is fall a critical time for our cool season perennial forages? The grass plants in […]

Can turnips really save the day?

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

By Chris Penrose Now that we have up most of our hay for the year, we can start to determine if there will be enough stored feed for the winter. Many farmers I have talked with have had significant reductions in yields this year leaving hay in short supply. In addition, many areas have been […]

Utilizing warm season forages

Thursday, July 9, 2009

The hot dry weather that typically accompanies the months of July and August reduces the growth and production of cool season pasture grasses. It can be a challenging time to balance forage supplies, pasture health and livestock numbers. One option that some graziers use to fill in this summer slump period is warm season forages. […]

Planning ahead keeps grazing going strong

Thursday, June 25, 2009

When grass is green and abundant, our world as it relates to pasture management is serene. Perfect all the times, wouldn’t it be nice if life could always be that way? Unfortunately, we will experience drought, excessive mud, severe winters, excessive forage growth, summer slumps, livestock sickness and livestock death. The truly successful grazers have […]

Managing tall fescue in pastures

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Many pastures in Ohio contain tall fescue as one of the cool-season plants which make up our pasture’s mix. Tall fescue is a persistent perennial bunchgrass that adapts to a wide range of conditions. It is tolerant of low pH, poor soil drainage and can endure drought situations well. Tall fescue adapts to most Ohio […]

Conservation program opportunities available for grazing operations

Thursday, May 28, 2009

The 2008 farm bill provides many opportunities for grazing operations interested in improving their grassland and natural resources. The Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) has both the traditional program options as well as new initiatives mandated in the 2008 farm bill. EQIP One opportunity for farmers interested in assistance with developing or improving their grazing […]

Ohio Pasture Measurement Project lets you watch growth from week to week

Thursday, May 14, 2009

How are your pastures growing? If you are like most you would reply in terms like fast or rapid. It is the month of May and pastures should be right in the middle of the ‘spring flush.’ ‘Spring flush’ is the term to describe the rapid growth of our cool season forages during April, May […]

Plan now for the summer slump

Thursday, April 30, 2009

What are you going to do this summer when growth in your cool-season pastures slows down? What will you do if they stop growing altogether sometime this summer? You must be thinking, “Aw come on man, why are you asking me that when spring has barely gotten into gear?” The answer is simply that a […]

Why would you consider management intensive grazing?

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Many of you have seen them — farms split into paddocks where the animals are rotated each week, every three days, once a day or even every 12 hours. Some of you may wonder why? Why go to all of that hassle? Is it really worthwhile? I suppose to some, all of those division fences […]

Strategies to begin the grazing season

Thursday, April 2, 2009

In the last “About Grazing” column, Chris Penrose wrote about some early season grazing management. In this column, I want to continue that theme and examine the strategies of set stocking vs. rotation to begin the grazing season. There is a saying that goes “Well begun is half done.” It implies that how a project […]

Extending the grazing season backwards

Thursday, March 19, 2009

By CHRIS PENROSE When we think of extending the grazing season, we usually think of how long we can go into the fall or winter without feeding stored feed. Another option often overlooked is how soon we can stop feeding as spring approaches. Several options There are several options to accomplish this. The first is […]

Mean temperatures keeping cows lean

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Some cows I’ve seen lately look thinner than normal for this time of year. With more than a month of winter remaining, it could mean trouble for producers as calving time approaches. We’ve had colder than normal temperatures, combined with a longer than normal continuous cold spell in our part of the state and this […]

It’s time to evaluate your pastures

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

There is no time like the present to evaluate your pasture fields for damage from over grazing and weather related stress. While you are trying to warm up after feeding your livestock and checking on their water, it is a good time to evaluate your recent management successes and challenges. After dealing with a drier […]

Pasture measurement can improve management

Thursday, January 22, 2009

When the management of grazing is discussed, what are the topics of that discussion? Typically, they involve forage growth, forage varieties, soils, animal nutrition, grazing behavior, and paddock layout and design. These are all valuable topics for a grazier to understand and use to effectively manage his system. Rarely do you hear discussions on the […]

Purchasing seed for new pastures

Thursday, January 8, 2009

The days are getting longer, which means spring is just around the corner! Having grown up in a warmer climate than Ohio, I like to remind myself spring will come as we head into the coldest months of the winter. Reminding myself of spring also motivates me to prepare for its arrival. Some tasks need […]

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