Forage Focus: Getting to Know Your Weeds

In this edition of Forage Focus, host Christine Gelley, an Extension Educator with The Ohio State University Agriculture & Natural Resources in Noble County is joined by Clifton Martin, OSU Extension- ANR Educator for Muskingum County, for a segment on “Getting to Know Your Weeds.” Clifton and Christine will identify weeds commonly found in Ohio pastures and hay fields, and address the principles of managing them.

Control Pasture Weeds Now

Christine Gelley, OSU Extension Educator ANR, Noble County

With the combination of sunny warm days and more than adequate rainfall received so far in May, grasses and legumes in our hayfields are beginning to flower. Which means, according to our knowledge of grass maturity and forage quality, it’s already time to make hay. If the weather will cooperate, that is.

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Emergency Forages for Planting Early to Mid-Summer

Dr. Mark Sulc, OSU Extension Forage Specialist, The Ohio State University
Dr. Bill Weiss, Dairy Nutrionist, The Ohio State University

Many forage stands were damaged this past winter, and the wet spring has further deteriorated stands that appeared they might recover. It is now too risky to try to establish perennial forages, with the warmer summer weather at our doorstep. We should wait until August to establish perennial stands. Meanwhile, what options can we consider for growing forage this year?

 

 

 

 

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How Much Rest Does Your Pasture Need?

– Victor Shelton, NRCS State Agronomist/Grazing Specialist (Sourced from the OSU BEEF Team Newsletter)

took the time to walk through most of my pastures a few days ago. I recommend doing this fairly often to keep a mental forage inventory. It is best to record the findings. Some use fancy electronic data sheets, some track on paper charts, some just have notes in their pocket datebook or smart phone. I use a combination. I like the paper charts for long term planning, but for a quick assessment, I like a white board.

More residual left and more rest; more roots, more production and animal performance

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Healing the Mess: Early Season Pasture Management

– Chris Penrose, OSU Extension Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources, Morgan County (originally published in the Ohio Cattleman, Expo issue)

For those with pastured livestock, this past winter is one we would like to forget, but damage done is preventing that from occurring. Many farmers talked about the loss of livestock due to the wet weather and mud. To make matters worse, more hay had to be fed to deal with the additional stress on animals from the muddy conditions. The result was animals in a lower body condition and fields in a mess from livestock, feeding hay in the fields, and equipment trying to get hay to livestock.

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When to Start Grazing: Don’t Rush It!

– Chris Penrose, Extension Educator, Ag and Natural Resources, Morgan County

Originally posted on the BEEF Newsletter

 

One goal I have had with livestock grazing over the years is to start as soon as I can. I put spring calving cows on stockpiled grass in early March to calve with the hope of not having to feed any more hay. Many years this works but not this year, grass is just starting to grow. The stockpile is about gone and I have started feeding them some more hay but hope to move the group with the fall calving cows this weekend. I then plan on starting a fast rotation around many of the paddocks and hay fields which is actually later than many years.

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Beware of Frost-damaged Forages

Sandy Smith, OSU Extension Educator ANR, Carroll County
(Previously published in Farm and Dairy: October 25, 2018)

Last week, we experienced our first frosts of the season in some areas of Ohio, but I don’t think anyone has experienced the real killing frost yet.

When some forages freeze, changes in their metabolism and composition can be toxic to ruminant livestock. The two problems that can occur are prussic acid (hydrogen cyanide) poisoning and bloat.

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Biennial and Perennial Weed Control is Best in the Fall

– Dwight Lingenfelter, Extension Associate, Weed Science, Penn State and William S. Curran,Ph.D., Emeritus Professor of Weed Science, Penn State

Fall is an excellent time to manage biennial and perennial weeds. In particular, biennials such as common burdock, wild carrot, and bull, musk, and plumeless thistles are much easier to kill while they are in the rosette stage of growth, prior to surviving a winter. Once biennials start growth in the spring they rapidly develop with the goal of reproducing and it becomes more difficult to control them.

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Good Management Practices for Fall Grazing

Ted Wiseman, OSU Extension Educator ANR, Perry County
(Previously published in Farm and Dairy: August 9, 2018)

 

Fall pasture management is a critical period for pastures. For many of us we have had adequate rainfall up until recently and pastures have done well to this point.

As we transition into late summer and early fall it is critical to pay close attention to your forages. Some pastures may be stockpiled, but those intended to be grazed this fall still need time to rest.

It’s very tempting to use those forages that green up late in the fall. Management decisions made this fall will greatly impact forage growth next year.

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Palmer Amaranth – Remain Vigilant!

As weeds continue to rear their ugly heads above the soybean canopy, it is important to remain vigilant and continue scouting your corn and bean fields on a regular basis.  We are seeing many weeds, Palmer Amaranth, Marestail, Waterhemp, Pigweed, Ragweed (Giant & Common), and various grassed, just to name a few.

Marestail, Palmer Amaranth and 19 other weeds are on the Ohio Noxious weed list. This designation requires that the landowner Public or Private MUST control these evasive weeds.  See earlier posts in this blog for more information on each of the 21 noxious weeds in Ohio.

Need help to identify weeds? As you scout your fields and you come across a weed that you’re not sure about; Is it Pigweed, Is it Waterhemp, Or is it Palmer.  If you are not sure call me at 740-397-0401 and I will be happy to help you with the identification. Visit our Knox County Extension YouTube channel (Click Here) for locally produced videos an how to identify and control this devastating weed.  Additional resources for Palmer Amaranth can be found on the OSU Weed Management Blog (Click Here).

Palmer Amaranth may very well be the most devastating pest you have/will ever encounter. Soybean yield losses approaching 80% and corn yield losses exceeding 90% have been reported.  A single female plant can produce up to 1,000,000 seeds and these seeds can remain viable in the soil for many, many years.  As Dr. Mark Loux states “Waterhemp and Palmer Amaranth will have more impact on the profitability of your farm operation than probably any other weedPalmer Amaranth, in the south, essentially doubled the herbicide costs in beans.” Remember, weed seeds are easily spread within a field and from field to field during harvest.

It is Your Farm, Your Field, Your Operation, Your Future – Protect it by keeping a watchful eye on your fields!