Each year as May and June arrives most cow/calf owners are making hay in preparation for their livestock’s winter forage needs. The 2015 season was no exception.
Producers watched weather forecasts looking for those three-day windows of opportunity to get their hay cut, dry and baled. As usual, there were a few chances near the end of May and maybe one or two windows in early June to make hay, but then precipitation seemed to occur almost daily. The wettest June on record was recorded in 2015, according to some local weather stations, and the rainy weather pattern continued for more than a month. This caused the majority of Ohio farmers’ first cutting hay to be made in late July and August.
Many years of data and forage tests are available that show how the quality of a forage, such as hay, decline as the plants become more mature. A series of forage tests from two eastern Ohio studies, conducted several years apart and in different locations, indicate nearly identical results.… Continue reading