A Canadian Farmer’s Success Grazing Alfalfa

After last week's article about how to reduce our fear of bloat when grazing alfalfa, I got some good feedback from our readers and I learned some interesting things that I'll be sharing with you in upcoming issues. In the meantime, here's an example of how one farmer is successfully using alfalfa as part of his grazing system. It comes to us from the Beef Cattle Research Council. The secret — if it is a secret — to pasturing cattle on alfalfa is to follow a few simple management steps to reduce the risk of bloat, say producers from across Canada who for years claim good success by including the forage legume in pasture mixes. Straight alfalfa stands can be managed quite well, but most producers today are favoring alfalfa/grass forage blends. They are very productive, produce excellent rates of gain on cattle, help to reduce the bloat risk, and also provide important biodiversity. Biodiversity benefits the cattle in providing a range of crops that mature at different times and can handle varying growing conditions, as well as biodiversity to benefit soil health.

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One thought on “A Canadian Farmer’s Success Grazing Alfalfa

  1. “Red clover isn’t as well adapted to handle a lot of moisture, while white clover can.” In our part of the world, if you don’t want alsike clover, which can take quite a bit of water, you use red clover. It certainly grows on the field next to our house in the parts where alfalfa finds things too soggy for its feet.

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