Alternatives Remain for Producing High Quality Forages This Year

Stan Smith, OSU Extension PA, Fairfield County

Unlike last year when Ohio wheat came off early, this year’s late wheat harvest and wet soils may prevent growers from double cropping those acres to soybeans. All things considered – a late start to spring, abundant rainfall that has destroyed the quality in first cutting hay, and wheat and forage harvest and/or corn and soybean planting delayed by untimely rainfall – utilizing presently vacant acres for growing an annual forage yet this summer is certainly an alternative for cattlemen to consider. If you had wheat, or even acres intended for corn or soybeans you were unable to plant, and have the need for additional high quality forage for grazing or mechanical harvest in 2018 and/or early 2019, review the articles from past years linked below that describe alternatives which merit consideration:

Oats, an Annual Forage to Consider

Sorghum X Sudangrass; a Real “Slump Buster”

It’s Time to Stockpile Forages, Should You?

Does Crabgrass Really Hate You?

Brassicas and Small Grains as Forages

Why Oats, and Not Cereal Rye or Wheat?

Supplemental Forage Options for Late Summer to Early Autumn Planting

NOTE: If planting Federal Crop Insurance Prevented Planting acres to a cover crop such as oats or cereal rye this summer, those acres may not be harvested mechanically or by grazing before November 1. Consult with your Crop Insurance agent with questions regarding your insurance and specific situation.