johnson grass hay

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crats

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i had a hard year for hay and only got to bale about 300 5x6 bales of hay for our 63 momma cows and 5 kept heifers will i have any problems is there enough stuff in it to keep them and well? they seem to love it and the only problem i can see is there's a bit of waste from the stems. we have a few old cows that are (full) carrying a belly that won't go down and have calved already so we looked it up in an old book its says to reduced the forage and increase grain to empty them out some so we moved them from the herd and are starting to reduced the hay and give them more cubes they don't seem to be getting anywhere yet. tell me your thoughts
 

endebt

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It is some of the best hay you can get. I planted 20 ac. in 1996 it producted 2 to 3 bales per ac. every cutting and three cutting each year. You need to let it set baled for about 30 days so you do not have purric(sp) acid in it. If you let it set it will go away and not harm the cows. I will be planting another 15 ac in the spring. Johnson grass does not need the fert. that coastal and tipin 85 needs. In my opinion it is some of the best hay you can get. Hope this helps. I am east of Waco Texas.
 

Angus Cowman

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I have alot of Johnson grass that I bale and you do have to watch the prussic acid and also if it is baled under stressed conditions it can retain nitrates
it is good feed and if your cows are doing well I wouldn't worry about it
The situation on the old cows staying fat I sure wouldn't complain about that and I wouldn't be feeding them grain or cubes if they look good on the hay
 

hillrancher

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If it wasn't for Johnson grass hay I would be without hay every year. I will agree it is a little course if not cut at the right time. There is a lot of sugar in the Johnson grass is the reason your cows eat it well. If it is cut with a haybine and stored out side it will deteriorate fast. If it is not conditioned it will store well out side. As stated before if it has been stored for a while no worries.
 

1982vett

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endebt":379wgghl said:
It is some of the best hay you can get. I planted 20 ac. in 1996 it producted 2 to 3 bales per ac. every cutting and three cutting each year. You need to let it set baled for about 30 days so you do not have purric(sp) acid in it. If you let it set it will go away and not harm the cows. I will be planting another 15 ac in the spring. Johnson grass does not need the fert. that coastal and tipin 85 needs. In my opinion it is some of the best hay you can get. Hope this helps. I am east of Waco Texas.

Folks, don't be alarmed, that little ground shaking wasn't and earthquake, It was just all those old row crop farmers and cotton choppers rolling in their graves. :lol: :lol: :lol:


Yep, it makes some good feed when it gets good moisture while growing. As to trying to answer your question about a "cows carrying full belly's" and how to get them to go down. I'm not exactly sure how to respond or if you really have a problem. Information that might be helpful would be what a forage test says. Another is how much are you feeding and how much are they eating. What do the cow patties tell you. Are you feeding salt and mineral and are they eating any.

As a response, if your hay is really low in nutrients, feeding cubes is one way boost their needs, otherwise it is a waste of money.
 

kenny thomas

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You talked about the stems, cut it every time it gets to about 24"-30" and you will have a very high quality hay without the stems. Cut a little higher, 6", and regrowth is faster. It also keeps it growing as it is trying to stem and seed.
 
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crats

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the problem with full cows that i have is that they are always carry around a big belly and these are old cows that we bought when we bought the farm. they came with it so to speak. they are old around 12- 15 years old. we lost 2 when they cashed in their chips last year as they rotted and exposed their innards it looked like they had a small bale of hay and stems still in them so we got an old book about animal health it said they were (full) or their teeth wasn't chewing their cud enough to get it through their system. and i was wondering about the stems making it worse. see i cut the hay after it was 4-5 feet high and it's quite stemy and the waste is high we looked at the dnt on the web it said it was good hay, we just had to get late as it given to us to cut and clean up the area.
 

dun

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crats":oaf2cty4 said:
i cut the hay after it was 4-5 feet high and it's quite stemy and the waste is high we looked at the dnt on the web it said it was good hay, we just had to get late as it given to us to cut and clean up the area.

I did the same thing will WSG (Big bluestem, little bluestem, sides oats and indian grass), it makes wheat straw look fine stemmed. Cows won;t touch the stuff.
 

Limomike

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Angus Cowman":3e4rx95o said:
I have alot of Johnson grass that I bale and you do have to watch the prussic acid and also if it is baled under stressed conditions it can retain nitrates
it is good feed and if your cows are doing well I wouldn't worry about it
The situation on the old cows staying fat I sure wouldn't complain about that and I wouldn't be feeding them grain or cubes if they look good on the hay

Good advice right here from AC. WE too have several bales of Johnson grass, (usually the 2nd cutting) and my cows eat it like candy. I always get it checked before baling, for the acid content though.
 

luke strawwalker

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There are two times to be worried about prussic acid (hydrogen cyanide) in Johnsongrass...

Live standing johnsongrass that's been frosted-- when it turns dark after a frost, give it about a week to make sure the prussic acid comes out of it before you turn the cows in on it.

The other time is when johnsongrass has been pretty badly drought stressed and then gets a good rain and greens up REAL quick and takes off growing again-- it can get prussic acid then.

When making hay prussic acid isn't a problem. When the grass is cut, it continues to metabolize until it wilts flat, and any prussic acid will come out of the stems (outgas) as it wilts down and dries down enough to make hay. Unless you're doing baleage or silage, prussic acid is eliminated by the natural curing of the hay.

Nitrates in johnsongrass (or just about any other grass for that matter, sorghums, sudax, ect) are usually only a problem in heavily fertilized patches that suffer drought stress severe enough to stunt the plants-- the grasses store the nitrates in the plant tissue in a concentrated form awaiting sufficient water to put on a growth spurt. If that water never comes, the concentrated nitrate just sits in the plants.

Nitrates DO NOT outgas from the stems and plant tissue during dry-down when making hay. If anything, they concentrate as the water evaporates out of the cut plants.

Hope this helps... OL JR :)
 

Angus Cowman

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luke strawwalker":hunqc38e said:
There are two times to be worried about prussic acid (hydrogen cyanide) in Johnsongrass...

Live standing johnsongrass that's been frosted-- when it turns dark after a frost, give it about a week to make sure the prussic acid comes out of it before you turn the cows in on it.

The other time is when johnsongrass has been pretty badly drought stressed and then gets a good rain and greens up REAL quick and takes off growing again-- it can get prussic acid then.

When making hay prussic acid isn't a problem. When the grass is cut, it continues to metabolize until it wilts flat, and any prussic acid will come out of the stems (outgas) as it wilts down and dries down enough to make hay. Unless you're doing baleage or silage, prussic acid is eliminated by the natural curing of the hay.

Nitrates in johnsongrass (or just about any other grass for that matter, sorghums, sudax, ect) are usually only a problem in heavily fertilized patches that suffer drought stress severe enough to stunt the plants-- the grasses store the nitrates in the plant tissue in a concentrated form awaiting sufficient water to put on a growth spurt. If that water never comes, the concentrated nitrate just sits in the plants.

Nitrates DO NOT outgas from the stems and plant tissue during dry-down when making hay. If anything, they concentrate as the water evaporates out of the cut plants.

Hope this helps... OL JR :)
Luke I see that your from Shiner Tx why don't ya send me some of that Shiner Bock
 

novatech

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luke strawwalker":1i21kvkm said:
The other time is when johnsongrass has been pretty badly drought stressed and then gets a good rain and greens up REAL quick and takes off growing again-- it can get prussic acid then.
We start checking for prussic acid when drought starts. Haygrazer or any other sorgum should be tested during drought conditions as well as after green up.
Here is a good article relating to the subject. http://www.hpj.com/archives/2008/nov08/ ... soning.cfm
 
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crats

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thanks for all the input on the hay issue but its all we got now and every ones pleased to get it we've got sleet and ice here today and not a one complains about the hay. my main concern was the affects on the older toothless cows as far as they process it I've got one that's full according to an old book on health of cattle it says to reduce the roughage and increase grain to relieve to belly contents and most of the old ones responded well only one heavy bred one is not moving fast but she is not stressing now. well this year we plan to plant 30 acres of oats and bale them, might not get a crop off the wheat so who knows what I'll do with it. thanks cliff
 

10-e-c-dirtfarmer

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Does anyone seed Jgrass? I bought 950# of seed and I'm getting conflieting advice from our university extension office! I need info on the management of Jgrass.
 

1982vett

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10-e-c-dirtfarmer":32qjrpmj said:
Does anyone seed Jgrass? I bought 950# of seed and I'm getting conflieting advice from our university extension office! I need info on the management of Jgrass.
Never seeded it, usually one is trying to eradicate it. Learning how to eradicate it might give you pointers on helping it grow.

http://www.inhs.uiuc.edu/chf/outreach/V ... grass.html
http://www.seedsource.com/medicine/curse.htm
http://mdc.mo.gov/nathis/exotic/vegman/fourteen.htm
http://www.illinoiswildflowers.info/gra ... _grass.htm
 

10-e-c-dirtfarmer

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It's VERY easy to get rid ofJgrass! All you need to do is pasture it hard, if you got cows you aint got Jgrass or not very much, they eat it to death!
What I'm cofused about is planting date, this link says 1st of April:
http://forages.tennessee.edu/Page10-War ... es%20.html
But and e-mail I got from the Plant Sciences-Ext @ UT says:
"Follow the same basic planting procedures as you would with sudex. Plant in May."
If that's right I could get the 1st cutting of fescue and then seed! Infact I could seed as late as July per the Coop planting charts!
Dazed-Confused in 10-e-c
 
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