Forage growers looking to fill their barns with high-quality hay may want to peruse a new Purdue University extension publication.

The Purdue Forage Field Guide packs a wealth of information into a palm-size 264-page book. It covers all aspects of managing, harvesting and utilizing forage crops, says Keith Johnson, Purdue’s extension forage specialist.

“It starts by looking at the seeding of forages, then moves into the traits of different forage crops and what they’re best used for in this region,” says Johnson. “The book examines pest problems associated with forages -- insects, weeds and diseases -- and harvest management and storage management strategies for hay and silage. We’ve also included information about nutrient needs for live-stock.”

He says the book should have broad appeal from the Great Plains to the Northeast. Internet users can preview it by logging on to the Purdue Crop Diagnostic Training and Research Center Web site, at

The field guide costs $8. To order, call the toll-free Purdue extension hotline at 888-398-4636 (EXT-INFO) and ask for the Media Distribution Center. Order forms are available via e-mail at and on the Crop Diagnostic Training and Research Center Web page.

Discounts are available for bulk orders of 300 books or more. For more information, contact Johnson at 765-494-4800 or