Start Date

28-2-2002 1:15 PM

Description

Most of the hay crop in Kentucky is harvested as dry hay and stored in round bales of various sizes for feeding on the farm. Most of the round-baled hay in Kentucky is used on-farm in feeding beef and dairy cattle. When alfalfa hay in round bales is left outside without protection from the weather, large losses in DM yield and in forage quality usually result. We routinely measure DM losses in the range of 20- 35% for a normal length hay storage season. Our research has shown that several economical storage options exist for protecting this hay from weathering. See AGR- 171, Round Bale Hay Storage in Kentucky, for more information. Heavy-duty tarps can be used to cover pyramid stacks 3 or 4 bales high. Ventilation is restricted under the tarp so extra care is needed to be sure the hay is dry enough, 18% moisture or less, to store well. Also, it is best not to stack round bales that will not be covered because rain water shed from the upper layers penetrates into the bales below and causes even greater damage than if the bales were placed in rows on the ground.

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Feb 28th, 1:15 PM

Package Options for Alfalfa

Most of the hay crop in Kentucky is harvested as dry hay and stored in round bales of various sizes for feeding on the farm. Most of the round-baled hay in Kentucky is used on-farm in feeding beef and dairy cattle. When alfalfa hay in round bales is left outside without protection from the weather, large losses in DM yield and in forage quality usually result. We routinely measure DM losses in the range of 20- 35% for a normal length hay storage season. Our research has shown that several economical storage options exist for protecting this hay from weathering. See AGR- 171, Round Bale Hay Storage in Kentucky, for more information. Heavy-duty tarps can be used to cover pyramid stacks 3 or 4 bales high. Ventilation is restricted under the tarp so extra care is needed to be sure the hay is dry enough, 18% moisture or less, to store well. Also, it is best not to stack round bales that will not be covered because rain water shed from the upper layers penetrates into the bales below and causes even greater damage than if the bales were placed in rows on the ground.