Red clover should be cut for hay when no more than 50% is in flower, when it has the optimal feeding value, with more than 14-15% protein. Phosphorus and potash are the fertilizer elements needed mostly by red clover. A firm, weed-free seedbed is essential. Both of these farm implements will cut the crop adequately, while the windrower deposits the cut oats into a single continuous storage pile along the field. How to sow. My dad for example wont brushhog less than 1' because he doesnt want to "kill" the clover. Faster establishing than alfalfa. The clover establishes easily, adapts to most soils, fits well into rotations with other crops, and is an excellent pasture crop when grown with an adapted grass. Hes my dad so he wont listen to his son. Thus, you are opening a wider window for hay crop harvest. Similar findings were noted in Illinois and Indiana. If cut late, the stems become woody, lose their palatability and the general value is considerably lessened. Seeding vigor is important because it can stretch out or improve stands. Most growth occurs in summer and autumn. It is used mainly for frost seeded winter wheat or planted under spring grain. For livestock feed, red clover can be grown as full-sized plants and used for hay, or broadcast and used for grazing. The first cut may be before this if there is a severe weed problem. The fields I grazed were either small pieces of straight red clover or old hay fields that had been frost-seeded with this legume and then harvested. Red clover mixtures can be undersown in an arable crop, or after harvest provided there is enough time for the plants to develop sufficiently prior to winter cold. Red clover performs better than alfalfa on acid or wet soils. Given plants do not self pollinate, insects play a critical role – bumble bees are particularly effective. If cut earlier, it is more difficult to cure. This legume is often used in grass mixtures predominantly for a cutting regime. Tall fescue grows in most Tennessee hay fields, but alfalfa, ryegrass, barley, bermudagrass, rye, wheat, oats, clover, orchardgrass, sorghum, pearl millet, timothy, or a mix of grasses and cereals are common. A second cutting or successive grazing should occur when red clover is ¼ in bloom. On a dry sandy soil, it may only need cutting twice in the season. Why and how to frost-seed clover. Conversely on a fertile soil in a warm wet summer, it may need cutting as frequently as once every ten days. Browse latest Medic and Balansa Hay, Rye Hay, Clover Hay and more Best suited to well-drained, fertile, slightly acid to neutral soils. Hay isn’t a plant. When using an herbicide, be sure to carefully follow all grazing and harvesting restrictions and other information stated on the herbicide label. Back to Red Clovers. The quality of the hay depends to a great extent on the way it is cured. If you suspect that your horse has ingested contaminated red clover or has been poisoned in any other way, contact your veterinarian immediately. Soybeans cut in Kentucky when beans were 3⁄4 mature resulted n greater gain than when cut later. On light soils in dry districts autumn sowings perform better as these will have well established roots capable of better growth in dry seasons. Red clover provides an important source of nectar to native bumble bees, which are known to be better pollinators of red clover than honey bees. If growing for hay, sow seeds 8-10" apart and thin to approximately 12", depending on rate of growth and other factors. Fortunately, red clover seed is relatively cheap and, as mentioned previously, easily establishes by frost seeding or drilling. Keep lime and fertilizers (phosphorus and potash) at the proper level. Note: while it is possible to make dry hay from red clover, it is often challenging. Dougle cut or "medium" red clover flowers in seeding year; vigorous regrowth after cutting; Single-cut or "mammoth" red clover slower growing, matures about 2 weeks later than double-cut; requires vernalization to flower, does not flower in seeding year ; more drought tolerant; Germination . It can be harvested a little later and still have the feed quality of alfalfa harvested earlier. Cut later, it loses palatability. Red clover should be reserved for well drained soils, as this legume does poorly when planted on wet soils. If a mower is used, a farm rake is then employed to form the windrows. These crops produce high-quality forage during the fall, winter and spring. If you feed a high protein grain then you may not need the alfalfa pellets however. Harvesting in drought conditions will also thin stands. Single Cut is always used for a plowdown Cover Crop Red Clover. Careless handling causes the leaves to shatter. The first harvest of red clover should be made when the field is at early bloom. But I tried to cut it down more and did see production come down. Clover, especially red clover, takes longer to dry than other forage species. Single Cut Red Clover is known as a one cut Red Clover if left for hay. I would estimate that during that time the intake of red clover was never less than 50 percent. It is almost always grown with a companion, cool season grass such as tall fescue, orchardgrass, or timothy. Red clover stands that are one year old or older should be cut three or four times in a season. Red clover has feed value equal to or exceeding alfalfa cut at the same time. When it dries, those hairs can be sticky and cause itching when handled.” A short-lived perennial, red clover has traditionally been susceptible to a number of diseases that cause it to die out after two or three years. It doesn’t serve as well as a hay product because of the pubescent hairs on the stem. Symptoms of Red Clover Poisoning in Horses. The main feature is greater top growth and N fixation or use for fall grazing, hay, etc. I know some people who are afraid to actually cut the clover, but doing it is actually beneficial to the plant and keeps it at a height that wildlife actually prefer. We have about a 10 acre plot of orchard grass and we are considering over seeding some white clover into this field this year for some added protein value. and Clovers for Forage Gary Bates, Associate Professor, Plant and Soil Science originally developed by Joe Burns, Professor Emeritus, Plant and Soil Science mall grain crops are widely used in Tennessee for pasture, silage and hay. If a third cut is to be taken, it should be done by mid-September. Good idea to give it a test run on some old hay out of a barn just to see if it works ok. Plant seeds ¼ to ½ inch deep. A feeding trial in Iowa showed that soybean hay was nearly equal in value to alfalfa in terms of milk and butterfat production and one in West Virginia showed greater production from soybean hay. Care should be taken to eliminate or appreciably reduce bloating of livestock when grazing. Suited to high rainfall with a good proportion of it during summer. Cut the oat hay with a windrower or sickle mower. White Clover. Performs best in cool coastal and tablelands areas. This discussion is oriented toward haylage and pasture systems. Double cut clover tends to be more aggressive starting, and will grow and flower the first year, producing knee-high vegetation after wheat harvest. The equipment you have will work fine if it functions like it should. Red Clover has its highest feeding value when in full bloom and should be cut for hay before the heads begin to turn brown. It can come from many different crops. Red Clover (Trifolium pratense) Description: A short-term (2–3 years) perennial legume. Producer Question from 2015 Q: I have a lot of sweet clover in my hay fields and pastures this year. Single Cut Red Clover can produce up to 90 lb. Graze or cut for hay when the red clover is ¼ to ½ in bloom. Red clover should be cut regularly when it reaches a height of 30cm. I cut back 1/3 of my alfalfa pellets and my goats did well. Ensiling . Red Clover- Red clover is a short lived perennial legume but has several advantages. Balers can be a problem. Red clover seed should be inoculated. The red clover should be cut while in full bloom before the blosoms start to turn brown. Harvesting Established Red Clover Stand. The non-native honey bee, with a shorter proboscis, can not reach the nectar in the long flowers of red clover, so they will go to other flowers if available. I have heard that sometimes cattle eating sweet clover, especially hay with sweet clover in it can have problems. Unlike most other legumes (especially alfalfa), red clover is quite shade tolerant, which is why it is a favorite for frost seeding into existing perennial pastures and even winter wheat. Unlike alfalfa, red clover tolerates slightly more acid and wetter soils. Seeding may be done with a drill or broadcast. Hay is grass, legumes, or other herbaceous plants that have been cut and dried to be stored for use as animal fodder, particularly for large grazing animals raised as livestock, such as cattle, horses, donkeys, goats, and sheep.However, it is also fed to smaller domesticated animals such as rabbits and guinea pigs. Step 3 Check the moisture content of the oat hay. Red clover (Trifolium pratense) is a short-lived perennial that can last 2 to 3 years. When grazing red clovers, turn livestock in when plants are 6-8″ tall and remove them when 3-4″ of the plants remain. Two general types of red clover grown in Ontario. It is better suited for hay production than other clovers because it grows upright and late into the season. Red clover that is seeded with a companion crop can usually be harvested only once during the establishment year, between mid-August and mid-September. It is a good option for frost seeding, so in the next month, we can spread this seed on pastures or hay fields. Buy and sell Clover Hay on Farm Tender, Australia's premier agricultural market place. Allow clover more time to dry when using it for hay. Graze or cut for hay when the red clover is ¼ to ½ in bloom. It can tolerate poorly drained and slightly acidic soils and has good seeding vigor. Pigs may also be fed hay, but they do not digest it as efficiently as ruminants. Red clover shares many of the same growing preferences as alfalfa, and the two are often sown together as companions. Harvesting red clover later impairs its feeding value but also compromises the second cut, as young shoots already elongated may be removed during the first cutting (Wheaton, 1993). Use an herbicide if you want to remove clover from your pasture or hay field. The Best Time to Cut Hay. When infested red clover is mowed and dried for hay, the hay then becomes contaminated. RED CLOVER Trifolium pratense Also called: medium red clover (multi-cut, early blooming, June clover); mammoth clover (singlecut, late blooming, Michigan red) Type: short-lived perennial, biennial or winter annual legume Roles: N source, soil builder, weed suppressor, insectary crop, forage Mix with: small grains, sweetclover, corn, soybeans, vegetables, grass forages See charts, p. 66 to 72 There is a difference between single and double cut red clover. Planting Clover in Orchard Grass - posted in Alfalfa/Hay: I am relatively new to hay farming and am looking for some expert opinions. Apply as recommended by soil tests. Red clover is widely grown for hay and pasture in Kentucky. Smothering can result if a great deal of fall growth is left over winter (because of red clover's large stems and leaves). (July 22, 2015) What can I do to avoid these problems? My field is mostly clover, yellow, white and red, also vetch. However, high producing dairy cow quality haylage should be harvested at the late bud or early (20%) bloom stage of maturity. So I would still feed some alfalfa pellets to supplement, alfalfa simply has more protein than clover. The re-growth of this legume was considerable. Leave at least 2 to 3 inches of growth after each harvest. Clovers are best cut for hay when in full bloom. With really sunny breezy days you can bale it the third day. Red clover, in most pasture systems, behaves as a short-lived perennial and must be reseeded every two or three years unless it’s allowed to mature and produce viable seed. You dads know how that works. 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