Alfalfa-grass: know the risks, know the benefits

There are many benefits to having legumes as part of the pasture sward composition.  While various clovers are the most commonly used legumes, alfalfa is also a viable option with the correct management. A recent article in Progressive Forage Magazine written by Christine Nieman, Ken Albrecht and Dan Schaefer reports the results from trials conducted […]

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Driftless Region Beef Conference to be Held Jan. 30-31

With nearly 2.5 million cattle in four Midwest states, university extension services in Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin are teaming together to offer the Driftless Region Beef Conference.  The annual event will be held Jan. 30-31, 2020, at the Grand River Convention Center in Dubuque, Iowa. The driftless region in these states contains rolling hills, […]

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Nutrition of Soil, Forage and Beef Cattle

Your 2019 calf crop has crossed the halfway point of days to weaning!  As we start heading into the fall season it’s time to measure the forage available in the pasture and prepare the land and cattle for the future.  We often don’t consider the soil fertility level in our pastures or realize the options […]

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Fall Forage Options When Feed Supplies are Short

The 2019 growing season has been challenging to say the least when it came to planting and harvesting forages for winter feeding. The wet conditions didn’t allow for getting into the fields on time or even getting crops like corn planted at all in some fields. However, there are fall forage options available to plant […]

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Tips to Reduce Winter-Feeding Hay Costs for Beef Herd

With hay being in short supply in some areas I thought it might be beneficial to re-post this article that Dr. Radunz and I put together back in 2011. Winter-feeding of the beef cows represents the greatest expense in most beef cow-calf enterprises.  Currently high feed prices, even for hay, should cause farmers to evaluate […]

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Using High Quality Alfalfa in Growing and Finishing Rations

Discussions with cattle feeders on growing and finishing rations often revolve around corn silage, grain, and co-product feeds like distiller’s grains or other grain processing feedstuffs. I also often hear folks make comments that beef cattle do not need high quality hay.  While some classes of beef cattle do not need high quality alfalfa hay, […]

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Cornstalks for Beef Cow Feed is a No-brainer

The best way to utilize cornstalks is to graze them. Cattle graze selectively, looking for the more palatable feedstuffs. The more palatable parts of the plant are also more nutritious. Cattle first eat the remaining corn grain, then husks, then leaves, and finally the stalk. Cattle will eat the more digestible and higher protein portions […]

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Corn Silage Pricing Spreadsheet Update and New App Available

A recent update to the Corn Silage Pricing Spreadsheet and the new Corn Silage Pricing app for iPhones and iPads are now available. The Corn Silage iPhone/Pad app is available at the iTunes store here: Corn Silage Pricing App for iDevices  The Excel Spreadsheet with some updates is available here: Corn Silage Pricing Excel Spreadsheet […]

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Reconsidering Warm Season Forages

Alfalfa is wonderful grazing plant.  It’s easy to establish, has great tonnage, good quality and grows well in hot, dry conditions. On the other hand, it’s not perfect. Alfalfa needs re-seeding which is costly and it needs to be mechanically harvested 3-4 times a year if not grazed.  In addition, our typical cool, wet May […]

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