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Silage

Plan your silage production from seed selection to harvest and packing the pile with tips from these ag professionals.

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0111fg_silage_1Introducing Silage Season…

One of my favorite columns in Progressive Forage Grower has always been our “In Your Own Words” feature, where we ask producers around the country a question about their operation or production practices. It’s interesting to see how things are the same and how they are different for growers, learn about their successes and challenges and maybe even pick up a tip or two about something you could incorporate on your own farm.

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For dairy farmers, selecting the right seed for corn silage is essential for efficient, profitable milk production. Most dairy farmers are working with a finite number of acres, so it is crucial those acres generate the greatest value of high-quality corn silage. After all, on a dairy farm, an acre of ground is not for making silage; it is for making milk.

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Recently, a producer posted a question on the Dairy-L listserv regarding partially frosted corn for silage. Progressive Forage Grower asked Bill Mahanna at Pioneer, who responded to the producer, to provide more information on the subject.

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Drought and its effects are often part of growing corn. Although we can do little to influence the weather, we can make management decisions that minimize the impact of the drought on the utilization of the crop.

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In a July 15 blog posting, Connor Marketing, Inc pointed out a valuable tool from the University of Wisconsin - a silage pile density calculator:

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Corn silage forms the backbone of many winter and year-round feeding programs for dairy cows and heifers. With today’s dairy economic situation of tight to non-existent profit margins, corn silage is an excellent source of energy that can reduce the costs of providing energy (starches) in the dairy cow’s diet while also serving as a digestible fiber source.

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