Hay making continues
Although we have harvested all our first-cut grass hay, others in the area who work much larger pieces of ground are still at it. Those who have a large demand for forage and who have a limited number of acres on which to grow it often rent ground from others. Friends of ours who are dairy farmers have most of their own property planted to corn and soy beans, so they rent a number of small fields in which to grow grass and alfalfa. The grass is usually baled dry while the alfalfa is baled while still wet and then tightly wrapped, air tight, in plastic. You may have seen these wrapped bales stored in very large, neatly stacked, piles as you have driven past farms on the Interstate. When deprived of oxygen in this way the bacteria living on the alfalfa are able to respire anaerobically – we call this fermentation. The result is a highly palatable, high protein, feed that cows really enjoy. The weather has been good for making hay and for encouraging harvested fields to regrow in support of a second-cut harvest which should happen in several more weeks.