The finer points of producing better-quality hay will be the main focus of an April 27 workshop at the Texas Agrilife Research and Extension Center at Overton.

After last year’s drought, East Texas hay stocks are low, making efficient production more important than ever, points out Vanessa Corriher, AgriLife Extension forage specialist. With better-quality hay, producers could cut or even eliminate supplemental feed costs, she says.

But for those who will have to supplement homegrown stocks, hay-buying guidelines will be presented.

“We’ll have information on how bale size and density affect transportation and feeding costs and give a rough idea of what they should be paying for shipping,” Corriher says.

Topics to be covered by Corriher and Jason Banta, AgriLife Extension beef cattle specialist, include:

● Forage species differences: yield potential, cutting time, bale-making characteristics and forage quality.

● Using USDA soil-survey data to select storage-site locations.

● Establishing annual forages.

● Managing and fertilizing annual and perennial forages.

● Understanding forage quality and hay testing factors affecting it.

● Bale size and density: pricing and cost per unit of nutrient considerations.

● Storage and feeding.

The event will begin at 9 a.m. and adjourn at 5 p.m. Two continuing education units will be offered to Texas Department of Agriculture private pesticide license holders, one in the general category and one in integrated pest management.

Registration, available online only, costs $60 and is limited to 50 people. Go to agriliferegister.tamu.edu and enter “hay” as the keyword.

For more information, contact Michele Sensing at 903-834-6191 or amsensing@ag.tamu.edu.