October 7, 2013

Legumes and Soil Mycorrhizae

We all appreciate legumes and their marvelous ability to fix atmospheric nitrogen and release it into the soil. But what happens after the legume plant releases this ammonium and nitrate? I blithely figured that into the soil they went and the grass roots just picked them up. Hardly so! What I considered the “roots” of […]

September 30, 2013

Setting Up an Intensive Grazing System That Works – Pasture Recovery Periods

Regardless of your irrigation status, you’ll find great tips here on improving spring pastures, getting more forage with less nitrogen, adding legumes and preventing and reducing parasite problems.

August 26, 2013


Troy has some great ideas and experience dealing with pesky knapweed. By the end of the article you might be thinking of it as an excellent forage too!

August 19, 2013

Can Foliar Diseases in Forage Grasses Cause Economic Losses for Livestock Producers?

Recently, I heard a farmer state that mid-summer foliar grass diseases are the most significant problem on on his farm. It’s true, these diseases, that are found everywhere, can reduce forage quality and palatability. Here’s how to recognize some of them, and what to do to reduce the problem.

July 8, 2013

How Concerned Should You Be About Meadow Foxtail In Your Pastures

If you’re dealing with Meadow Foxtail, or any other less-desirable grass species in your hay field, here’s a look at it’s impact on your pastures, and the value of the hay.

July 1, 2013

Radishes to Garnish Salads…or Pastures

Forage radishes are a great cover crop for soybeans and corn where they increase soil nitrogen and improve water retention. They could help pastures too. Here’s what some Vermont dairy farmers found.

June 24, 2013

Keyline plowing results: 522,720 worms for $280

How something is tested is just as important as the results. Part of the scientific method is just figuring out if you asked the right questions and tested appropriately. So here we more fully describe what we did, existing conditions, and the farmers’ management.

June 3, 2013

Adding Summer Annuals to Your Pastures

When cool season perennials take a vacation during July and August, dropping off in quality and yields, summer annuals might pick up the slack for you. Here’s a quick look at some of your options in case you want to get planting right now. We’ll follow up with more in-depth information in future issues.

June 3, 2013

Tall Fescue: High-Yielding Forage Grass or Toxic and Invasive Weed?

During his travels around the state in 1931, Dr. E.N. Fergus of University of Kentucky observed a patch of grass that he thought was worthy of further study.  He collected and increased (i.e., several cycles of planting and harvesting) the seeds, and in 1943 released the tall fescue variety known as Kentucky-31.  Interestingly, this variety now […]

March 28, 2013

Addressing concerns about red clover in pasture

There are some questions that have swirled around the ether about planting red clover: are phytoestrogens present and will they cause problems for my animals? Can red clover cause frothy bloat? Why should I plant it? And which varieties? Follow up with Dan Hudson as he addresses these concerns and more, breaking them down one by one.

March 20, 2013

Frost Seeding Red Clover in Hay Fields and Pastures

Sugaring season is here, and that means that it is also time to frost-seed red clover in your pastures and hay fields if you have it in your mind to do it at all. If you are interested in a low-cost method of increasing forage yield and quality in hay fields and pastures, read on….

March 19, 2013

Bedstraw for Breakfast

Sheep and cattle in Vermont were trained to eat this plant, and the cattle at Black Queen Angus enjoy it without any training at all. Could it be on the menu for your livestock?

March 19, 2013

Canada Thistle is Alfalfa’s Equal

This plant compares to alfalfa in nutritional value. Here are some ways to use that nutrition to manage this plant in your pastures.

March 19, 2013

Spotted Knapweed

This highly invasive plant is found in almost every state in the U.S. and in Canada. If you’ve found it in your pastures or ranges, here’s some good news about controlling its spread while turning it into a nutritious forage.

March 19, 2013

Weeds as Quality Forage

We’ve considered these plants pests for so long that it’s hard to change our minds. Here are some reasons why you might like to think of them differently.

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