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Alfalfa

Find articles on alfalfa planting, stand establishment and crop management to help you achieve your production goals.

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Imagine cutting next year’s first crop of alfalfa and seeing a perfect stand of deep green, healthy and aggressively growing alfalfa flowing through your haybine. Your neighbor says it’s the best stand of alfalfa he’s ever seen.

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I can’t help but reflect on how a football team’s success is dependent upon each member’s contribution to the whole. Each individual’s own success did not happen overnight; years of coaching, conditioning and practicing led to success.

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Deciding your fall alfalfa harvest schedule is like a juggling act – you need to think about your forage inventory and needs, potential yield, risk of winterkill and even harvest cost.

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The last several years have posed many challenges for dairy producers: droughts, high feed costs, high input costs and escalating land rents.

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Mike Haedt, a certified crop adviser based in Green Bay, Wisconsin, has spent the better part of 40 years educating his growers to understand alfalfa’s genetic makeup, the importance and significance of the plant’s growth environment and how to swing the “production pendulum” in the direction of better yields – even in a drought year.

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Tissue sampling has become very popular in the last couple of years. It much more accurately represents plant nutrition versus the traditional soil sample.

Soil samples are still important; tissue sampling just adds more depth of real-time plant nutrient balance.

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