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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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Alfalfa is used by and marketed for dairy cows, beef cattle and exports, in the form of cubes and compressed bales. In Washington state, alfalfa makes up about 65 percent of the total hay grown.

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Profitability in producing alfalfa hay is mostly a function of yield. However, to the animal that consumes hay, forage quality is very important, especially in high-producing dairy cows where intake may be limited. Four factors change as the harvest date is delayed: physical yield, forage quality, value per ton and harvest cost per acre.

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Every alfalfa producer has made the difficult decision to end the life of an alfalfa stand. In irrigated alfalfa production, this is often associated with crop rotation and seems to hover around a four- to seven-year stand life.

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Cotton root rot is not just a fear for cotton producers. The rise of cotton root rot in alfalfa fields is a growing concern for alfalfa producers.

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Deb Wilks is a dairy nutritionist and consultant with EPL Feed LLC, a nutritional support and service team for dairy producers in the Pacific Northwest.

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If you are a dairy producer, you don’t need me to tell you the industry has been in a bear market for at least the past 18 to 24 months.

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