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Ag News and Views: November 2005

How Does Tifton 85 Measure Up?

In 1996, the Noble Research Institute's Dr. Jerry Baker established a bermudagrass variety trial near Ardmore, Okla. Since then, Baker has been producing annual reports presenting forage yields for bermudagrass varieties in the test. As producers begin considering sprigging options, variety trial information is often discussed. Tifton 85 is one variety that receives much interest because it is always one of the highest-yielding varieties.

It's Time to Develop a Hay Feeding Strategy

Nutrition, namely hay and concentrate feed, accounts for about 40 percent of operating costs in a cow-calf production system. This fact causes some producers to try to cut cost of production by cutting corners in the area of the nutrition program. It doesn't take long to figure out you don't want to skimp on nutrition; however, you can be more efficient if you put together a strategy for feeding hay this winter.

'Steel' Yourself for Higher Prices

It appears the problem of increasing steel prices will not be alleviated any time soon. As a result, this might be the time to consider future purchases. Waiting until later may, in fact, have a substantial cost associated with it - assuming the cost of steel, and, hence, farm machinery, equipment and supplies, will continue to increase over time.

Take Time to Winterize Sprayers, Catch Up on News

I would like to look at some other winter activities besides feeding the cows or getting to some of those other chores put off from this summer. Wintertime is the perfect opportunity to catch up on what is new in agriculture, and one of the best tools for doing that is the Internet. Another important item to accomplish before winter arrives is winterizing your sprayer.

Tips for Coping With The High Cost Of Fertilizer

As everyone has no doubt noticed, fertilizer prices have shot through the roof over the last year. Producers must first have an idea of base fertility reserves and soil pH. Without this basic information, every other fertility decision is only a guess. With careful planning and attention to all the details, fertilization can still produce the lowest-cost forage available.

Want A Bigger Buck?

Almost everyone interested in deer enjoys seeing a large buck. What can you do to improve chances for a larger buck? The answer is simple - do not shoot one that is smaller than what you consider big.

Which Replacement Female Option is Right for You?

Cow-calf producers across the United States are increasing the size of their cow herds. One indication of herd rebuilding is the ratio of female (cow plus heifer) slaughter to steer slaughter.