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Grazing soybeans

Posted: Wed Jan 02, 2019 8:17 pm
by scvfd_7241
Looking for information on grazing soybeans. I'm thinking about planting soybeans and having 5 to 6wt cakes on it in as backgrounding lot. I have a lot that is 4 acres that I plan to background some (20-30) calves in. I was wondering if I could plant the lot in soybeans and graze them to help with feed cost. Also thought about feeding grain and hay free choice and dividing the lot into 4 sections and rising them through the different sections to lengthen the grazing period somewhat. Looking for some advice and opinions for people who have experience doing this.

Re: Grazing soybeans

Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 8:11 am
by Banjo
It might be ok, but I think corn would be better. I would plow it then plant an open pollinated corn....it should be over 10 % protein and the tearing of the ground would give you some crabgrass too. Depending on where your located.
If you got a good stand of corn and could cultivate it a couple of times, get some crabgrass growing along with other stuff like morning glory, Johnson grass. Then strip graze it. I've done that before...it works good.

Re: Grazing soybeans

Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 8:58 am
by OleScout
I would consider Sudan over soybeans. I've never intentionally grazed soybeans but have had neighbors cattle get into my soybeans. After being bitten off the soybeans don't do much.

Re: Grazing soybeans

Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 11:02 am
by willow bottom
OleScout wrote:I would consider Sudan over soybeans. I've never intentionally grazed soybeans but have had neighbors cattle get into my soybeans. After being bitten off the soybeans don't do much.


Forage soybeans produce more tonnage and growth versus a traditional AG variety bean. Iron & Clay peas would be my choice over soybeans though.

Re: Grazing soybeans

Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 3:05 pm
by Bigfoot
I have only seen forage beans one time in my life. They were in a food plot. They were planted on some real poor ground, and subsequently weren’t impressive. Planted on some productive ground, probably be a whole different story. I’d consider sudex here.

Re: Grazing soybeans

Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 4:58 pm
by ga.prime
Re the soybean question- probably feed three or four days and cost $800 to grow, IF you don't have to keep deer out while they're growing. You decide if that's good economics.

Re: Grazing soybeans

Posted: Thu Jun 27, 2019 12:13 pm
by BFE
I'll bring this back up. I have some prevent plant ground next to a pasture. I'm planting corn and soybeans in 15" rows on it after I can bush hog it down ( 1.5" rain yesterday on already waterlogged soil). Treated beans leftover from last year and busted bag corn from my cousin's seed dealership, all I'll have in it is an extra trip over the field. Will there be any bloat issues or anything with soybean grazing?

Re: Grazing soybeans

Posted: Thu Jun 27, 2019 4:52 pm
by ga.prime
I've never seen any bloat killed deer laying around a soybean field.

Re: Grazing soybeans

Posted: Fri Jun 28, 2019 5:33 am
by BFE
ga.prime wrote:
Thu Jun 27, 2019 4:52 pm
I've never seen any bloat killed deer laying around a soybean field.
True. Thanks for pointing something out that I should've thought of to start with!

Re: Grazing soybeans

Posted: Fri Jun 28, 2019 5:51 am
by Ebenezer
A mix of the beans, bin run corn or whatever you want to put out, sudan and anything else such as sunflowers will work fine for repeated grazing if you time graze. It will depend on you to get them back out or else the beans or cow peas will be a one time deal.

Re: Grazing soybeans

Posted: Sun Jun 30, 2019 6:25 am
by jdg
I agree with ebenezer here and the others. A monoculture of soybeans is not a good return per dollar spent, and I do prefer iron and clay over forage soybean over traditional soybean. In the southeast I good summer annual mix should go heavy on pearl millet or one of the sorghums (with the later if you're not afraid of sugar cane aphid)...and the best legumes to mix are sunn hemp and iron and clay (in that order). I typically throw in a little crabgrass, and this year I experimented with sunflower, buckwheat, Alyce Clover, and Okra...all about 1lb per acre. Have to plant a few of those really shallow with moisture though.

Soybeans typically are a one time graze, and not a good bang for buck.