What is in this article?:
- Flooding challenges corn silage producers
- Other theories
• From major flooding along the Susquehanna River, to smaller watersheds with less significant flooding periods, many silage producers are faced with significant challenges in trying to maximize stored forages that resulted in significant yield reductions due to the drought earlier in 2011.
Others have commented that damaged corn crops have lower photosynthesis production that results in low levels of readily available plant sugars to drive fermentation.
Whatever the cause, the result is that flooded crops have a history of poor fermentation.
To attempt to compensate for this, it would be advantageous to evaluate your silage inoculation program on these crops. Perhaps increasing the rate, to 1.5 to 2X may be beneficial.
Using an inoculant with L. buchneri would be helpful due to the increase in acetic acid that these inoculants produce to inhibit the formation of molds.
A caution would be to not use these inoculants when whole plant corn moistures exceed 70 percent.
Another suggestion is to add 2-3 pounds per ton of buffered proprionic acid to the silage in addition to the inoculant. These two different products cannot be combined in one application. One should be applied at the chopper and the second applied at the ag bag.
Be sure to carefully feed this silage. Check with your nutritionist to get good forage analysis.
Also consider that due to poor fermentation these crops will not store as well and should be fed out prior to next summers’ warm temperatures.
Material for this article was based in part on a discussion with Limin Kung at the University of Delaware and material from Daniel Hudson and Dennis Kauppila at University of Vermont Extension: http://agronomator.wordpress.com/2011/09/06/206/.