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Why Cows That Learn to Eat One Weed Will Choose to Eat Others

By   /  March 30, 2020  /  Forage, Pasture Health, Weeds  /  2 Comments

In 2004, I trained cows at Grant-Kohrs Ranch National Historic Site to eat Canada thistle, leafy spurge and spotted knapweed. Then, they started eating musk thistle as soon as I put them in pasture. When I trained 110 pairs to eat Canada thistle at the Jumping Horse Ranch near Ennis, Montana, they added musk thistle […]

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How to Teach Cows to Eat Weeds in Just 8 Hours Over 7 Days

By   /  March 23, 2020  /  Forage, Pasture Health, Weeds  /  2 Comments

This works for any animal – so whatever you’re raising, check it out! In 2004, I taught a small group of heifers to eat Canada thistle, leafy spurge and spotted knapweed. I was inspired by two decades of research on how animals choose what to eat, and by ranchers’ (perfectly reasonable) refusal to incorporate goats […]

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Plant Root Exudate Changes With Drought to Encourage Soil Microbes to Provide More Nutrients

By   /  March 16, 2020  /  Forage, Pasture Health  /  No Comments

There are all kinds of interactions between plants and the soils they grow in, and little by little we’re understanding more about what’s going on. Take root exudate for example. That’s the cocktail of carbohydrates – sugars, amino acids and organic acids – that result from photosynthesis and end up in the plant’s roots and […]

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How to Choose a Grass Variety That Works for You

By   /  March 9, 2020  /  Forage, Pasture Health  /  1 Comment

They say variety is the spice of life. That’s true, even when it comes to varieties of different forage grasses. Often, when we want to reseed our pastures, we may decide on a particular kind of grass, but may not consider all the varieties of that grass there are. Or, we may just ask for […]

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Finding Credence in a Clearcut Revival – Converting a Dying Forest Into Grazing Land

By   /  March 2, 2020  /  Forage, Pasture Health, Soil, Weeds  /  3 Comments

In addition to being an article about forest conversion, this is also an example of looking at the resources we manage, paying attention to a site’s potential, and considering what is best for our operations. We hope it inspires you to look around with new eyes.

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