The following are forage-industry mentions from universities and organizations around the country:
• Forage quality will be among topics addressed at the “Pearls of Production: Women in Agriculture” conference, slated for Nov. 8-9 at the University of Missouri. Along with learning how to test hay for moisture and analyze nutrient content, livestock producers can attend sessions on plant identification and growth, forage fertility, weed management and cover crops. Get program details.
• The Washington State Hay Growers Association (WSHGA) has posted a list of companies and organizations already signed up to exhibit at its 2014 Annual Convention and Trade Show. The event is scheduled for Jan. 15-16 at the Three Rivers Convention Center in Kennewick. The schedule is not yet posted, but registration information is available.
• Quick Facts About Forages and Grasslands In Georgia is a new booklet available from the forage team at University of Georgia Extension Forages. Topics covered in the publication include keys to profitable forage systems, soils of Georgia, the importance of grasslands, benefits of better grazing management, typical hay storage losses and more. The booklet is available online.
• Reseeding Pipeline Right-of-Way Pasture and Hay Areas is a paper from Ohio State University (OSU) Extension outlining points farmers should keep in mind when negotiating easements across hayfields and pastures with shale oil and gas pipelines. One key consideration examined is that pipeline installation and reseeding can take place at times of year that are less than ideal for forage establishment. Clif Little, OSU Extension educator in Guernsey County, and Mark Sulc, OSU Extension forage specialist, authored the paper.
• The hay auction at this year’s Cherokee County, TX, Hay Show & Sale raised about $14,000, half of which is earmarked for a 4-H scholarship fund, according to a recent story in the Daily Progress, in nearby Jacksonville. The remaining half is split between the Cherokee County Soil & Water Conservation District and the Cherokee County Exposition Center. Held last month, the event offers hay producers the opportunity to have their hay tested for free when they submit samples.
• Rainfall in recent weeks has “greatly alleviated” the severity of the drought in parts of Texas, according to a state crop and weather report released last week by Texas AgriLife Extension. Less than 1% of the state was under exceptional drought conditions as off Oct. 22 compared to 6% three months earlier, notes the report using U.S. Drought Monitor data. Over the same time frame, extreme drought in the state dropped from nearly 22% to about 4% and severe drought decreased from 39% to about 19%. Cooler temperatures have slowed warm-season forage growth in parts of the state. Even so, many producers were able to take another hay cutting. In the South region, the rains improved pastures and rangeland to the point that producers were able to suspend supplemental feeding of livestock.
• Prices for major fertilizers, including anhydrous ammonia, have dropped steadily in recent months. George Silva, an extension educator with Michigan State University in Eaton County, MI, discusses the trends in this recent report.
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