What is in this article?:
- High feed costs put a premium on quality hay
- Steps to high quality hay
• Feed prices are high, so anything producers can do to produce quality hay is a benefit.
While producers might find it challenging to get hay dry in June due to changing weather conditions, there are steps they can take to get the crop up quickly and reduce the potential for rain damage, a forage expert with Ohio State University's College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences says.
"Proper tedding, raking, and equipment care are just some of the steps producers can take to reduce drying time and produce high-quality hay," said Clif Little, an educator with Ohio State University Extension.
Although drying time for hay is affected by forage species, environmental conditions, cut height and swath width, Little said a good management plan can make a big difference in hay quality.
"Cutting and drying hay quickly is always important, especially with everything being a little behind this year because of the planting season," he said. "Feed prices are high, so anything producers can do to produce quality hay is a benefit.
"We're fighting rain as well as other work we've got to do around the farm. But we still have to get hay up quickly, because when we get rain on our forage it can be damaged or ruined. So using these steps may allow producers to get it up a day or two earlier."