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Forage Types

Hay, silage and pasture is your business, and it's our focus. Take your operation to the next level with the help of our comprehensive and practical information, education and technology about various forage types.

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The process of producing silage involves harvesting a fresh forage crop at a near-neutral pH from the field, putting that crop into an enclosed storage system of some sort (e.g., bales, bags, bunkers, pits, piles, towers, etc.) and acidifying the material to reduce its pH, which prevents the growth of spoilage organisms.

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When corn is standing in the field, two primary harvest options exist: combine grain or chop silage.

Determining what the grain is worth is easy. Multiply grain yield by bushel price. Subtract harvest, hauling, drying and storage costs if you desire net returns.

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0111fg_silage_1How do you store your silage? Why have you chosen that method? What equipment do you use to pack your pile?

Although some of you might have just gotten your corn silage crop planted a relatively short time ago, this issue we wanted to think ahead a few months to the end result and ask our producers about how they store and pack their silage.

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“Remember, corn is a grass. In some ways, you need to think about managing your corn for silage as if you were managing your grass hay crop." said Matt Waldron, University of Missouri dairy nutritionist.

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Jason Rowntree from Michigan State University presents a practical guide to determining forage availability and when to turn cows out in the spring.

Plain and simple – each growing season is different. Even if you’ve planted a corn hybrid for silage and gotten consistent results for several years, it’s important to realize weather and environmental conditions in a given year may affect this year’s performance.

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