Hay seeding question HELP PLEASE..

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hillsdown

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OK as I have posted before that we are gradually reseeding our hay field 30-40 acres each year. Well last year hubby did something different (that I did not agree with). He worked up the field in the fall without spraying a total kill application first.
Now that it is the end of may and we have had 0 moisture no weeds or grass have come up yet . The filed has been cultivated and harrowed many times so far.
Now thinking that it may be too late to wait for the weeds etc. to come up then spray and seed, he is thinking of just cultivating one more time and the harrowing and seeding and hope for the best.

Now the seed etc. is expensive and I kinda hate to throw a few thousand dollars away if nothing is going to come up but weeds which btw will not be allowed to be sprayed if the hay crop comes up as well because it's an alfalfa grass mixture under seeded with oats..

I am completely at a crossroads here so has anyone else had success doing it this way in the same short growing season like we have here..

Thanks.
 

BeefmasterB

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One option might be to go ahead and apply fertilizer right now and before you seed, with the idea of getting any weeds to sprout right away so they can be sprayed with an herbicide. Otherwise, the alfalfa/oat mix is a good one to choke out weeds. I think the subject of an herbicide that could be safely used on both alfalfa and oats came up before on CT. It seems that Dun mentioned an herbicide that would work but I might be wrong about that.
 
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hillsdown

hillsdown

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Thanks BmB I found one a few years ago and posted on It. It is I think is called perform but it is very expensive and it is safe on grass but sometimes kills alfalfa or at least holds it back so I never did use it we just cut it before the pig weed headed out and it worked great.
It was also suggested that we might just seed the oats and not the grass alfalfa mixture. Will oats choke out the weeds or will it be visa verse, also there is a herbicide that will kill weeds but not oats right..

I just am so confused I do not know why he didn't do as we have done the last 3 years .If he would have it would all be seeded by now and maybe coming up as we could have got it in before the last snow fall and had some moisture on it..
 

BeefmasterB

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The oats will help choke out the weeds. I thought maybe you already had all the seeds mixed. If they are separate then you could plant the alfalfa first and then spray for weeds and then follow up with interseeding with the oats. There are several herbicides available for either plant but just not together. I would use an herbicide with no residual, of course. Depending on the weeds you have (gotta identify them!), 2,4-D amine might work and is not very expensive. But, since you have a short growing season, do you really have time to let the alfalfa come up, then spray, wait, then interseed with oats? I'm wondering if maybe ya'll laid the mix (alfalfa and oats) down thick, maybe it would choke out the weeds faster. Has the land been fertilized?
 
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hillsdown

hillsdown

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Yes it was heavily fertilized last year before broken up as well as this year again and will have fertilizer mixed in the seed as well.

I guess we are going to go ahead and seed it and wish for the best. Our neighbors (really good friends and my go to people here) said to go ahead because we are no later than any other year around here with a late snow fall, and they do crops every year..Who knows hubby may get lucky and I will have to eat my words..I hope that is the case this time..

Wish me luck and rain..

Thank you for your help and advice. :)
 

Stocker Steve

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Fall burn down in the north usually is to reduce quack grass. I have reseeded successfully w/o fall burn down. I think planting an oats cover crop w/o moisture is the bigger risk.

Two options are:

1) Direct seed alfalfa and spray for grass. Could interseed grass later. This will cost more but direct seeded alfalfa with a Brillion is the lowest risk approach.
2) Plant with the cover crop but be prepared to cut it early. "Plant in the dust and the bins will bust."

Good luck with the rain. We got 0.77 inches in the last month from a total of 11 showers. I planted in the dust...
 

rockridgecattle

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Hubby would go ahead and seed it here. He has seeded quite late sometimes with that mixture. However he cuts the oats for green feed when it is underseeded. That tends to curtail the weeds, allows the hay to grow abit more before the frost.
 

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