Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Planting Alfalfa Seed


What's going on at the ranch these days?

Sowing seeds that's what!

A lot of work has been going on around here getting a new field ready for a crop of alfalfa.  Since the price of alfalfa has gone out the roof, so to speak, we decided to put our land to good use.


This is how it went....



We bought seed that is high quality and engineered for warmer climates, non-dormant and disease resistant.  If everything goes as planned we should have a pretty nice looking crop next spring.



September is the time to plant alfalfa seed, in our part of the country, for a new spring crop.  We planted on September 6, 2011 and expect to see this crop ready for it's first cutting in the March or April, always depends on the weather.  Once established and grown to cutting height we will cut every 40 to 45 days, again, depending on the weather.  I talked about what had to be done to get this field ready in the Growing Alfalfa post, if you didn't already read it.




The feild we chose to grow the new crop had to prepped for seed. This feild has never had a crop or any type of plantings.  The ground was hard as a rock from the cows trampling and eating the natural grasses, so we had to rip up the dirt by cross tilling with a tractor.




The land went from this...



 To this!  


I find it amazing that a tractor and a great operator can make the ground so perfectly manicured.





The seed was planted with this Land Pride seeder attached to the tractor.  We planted about 25 lbs of seed per acre.  This field is approximately 6 acres.  We are expecting to yield about 100 bales per cutting.  We will see how it goes next March-April...depending on the weather. 








It is a lot of work getting a field ready for seed, but it will be worth it when it's all said and done. 





If it goes as planned, we hope it looks like this!


I'll keep you all updated.

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