Fescue stockpile guys....need advice

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Midtenn
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Fescue stockpile guys....need advice

Post by Midtenn » Thu Jan 10, 2019 6:12 pm

Ok here's the deal. I have an adjoining farm I lease but we have to get the cattle out sept thru mid jan. (deer hunting). So cattle are off it now. My plan was to start grazing it in early to mid march to save hay. We're talking pretty intensive 50 pairs on 70-80 acres no fertilizer. This place would be rotated all year with 3 other smaller pastures say 35 acres each. Which they are on two of those smaller ones right now.
So what happened was I pulled them off pretty early last year late August and we got lots of rain. It got really mature see pictures. The dead stuff is johnsongrass. Fescue and natives underneath. so now I'm thinking I need to go ahead and graze it now rather than wait. Thinking it needs to be eaten down in order to grow better come spring. ?? Due to cows being in separate breeding pastures I would only have about 25 pair to put on it right now. I'm thinking this is just going to save hay now rather than save hay in march. Pros/ cons ? Thoughts and advice appreciated.
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Re: Fescue stockpile guys....need advice

Post by kenny thomas » Thu Jan 10, 2019 6:24 pm

I'm grazing now, best advice I can give is to give them small areas at a time according to how much time you can spend doing it. I have 20 cows, 2 bulls and 6 calves on 2 acres since Sunday. Still enough grass for tomorrow and probably Saturday.
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Re: Fescue stockpile guys....need advice

Post by kenny thomas » Thu Jan 10, 2019 6:29 pm

Midtenn, read the topic from last month. Stockpile ? for fescue fans, i will bring it back up.
My thoughts only, don't bet the farm on them. KT

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Re: Fescue stockpile guys....need advice

Post by Midtenn » Thu Jan 10, 2019 7:57 pm

kenny thomas wrote:Midtenn, read the topic from last month. Stockpile ? for fescue fans, i will bring it back up.

Thanks I appreciate that.

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Re: Fescue stockpile guys....need advice

Post by Midtenn » Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:21 pm

kenny thomas wrote:I'm grazing now, best advice I can give is to give them small areas at a time according to how much time you can spend doing it. I have 20 cows, 2 bulls and 6 calves on 2 acres since Sunday. Still enough grass for tomorrow and probably Saturday.


Kenny, cross fencing even with hot wire wont be practical on this place. It's 70 acres of hills, hollers with woods mixed in. So it's going to be one big pasture. Lots of questions: After reading last months thread, I think I'm reading that you're not feeding ANY hay? Our winter here is comparable, maybe milder than where you are. If I can do that it's great because this place is kind of hard to reach and a good ways from the hay barn over the ridge. Looking at the pictures of my grass, would you estimate it's fair to assume I would only have to feed hay if snow's on the ground? I can store enough bales outside on entrance on other road to handle that situation if need be. So if I turn in 20 pairs, 5 open heifers, 6 big weaned calves, 1 bull ....about how long would you think 60, lets say 50 acres of this grass should last?

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Re: Fescue stockpile guys....need advice

Post by kenny thomas » Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:33 pm

That's hard to figure. Each farm is so different.
I fed hay during November and part of December. I still unroll a little because the protein is so high they don't need a belly full of it.
With poly wire you would be surprised what you can do. But if you can't it just means a little more waste. By March even the fescue will start to deteriorate. Graze it as long as you can. By then your probably getting some green anyway.
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Re: Fescue stockpile guys....need advice

Post by kenny thomas » Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:36 pm

I'm gonna think you could have 40 days of grazing. The areas closest to the water will go first.
Odd thing is that when I unroll part of a roll of hay they will stop eating green grass and come to it. After a while most will go back to the grass.
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Re: Fescue stockpile guys....need advice

Post by Banjo » Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:42 pm

I think I would try to figure a way to at least cut it in half with an electric fence of some kind.

That's my opinion.....feel free to make it yours.

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Re: Fescue stockpile guys....need advice

Post by kenny thomas » Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:49 pm

Midtenn, I feel if it's there and they can digest it why not let therm eat it since it's free. A neighbor said I can turn into a hayfield and about 4 acres where he just finished picking corn. They will eat there for 2-3 weeks at least.
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Re: Fescue stockpile guys....need advice

Post by Midtenn » Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:13 pm

kenny thomas wrote:That's hard to figure. Each farm is so different.
I fed hay during November and part of December. I still unroll a little because the protein is so high they don't need a belly full of it.
With poly wire you would be surprised what you can do. But if you can't it just means a little more waste. By March even the fescue will start to deteriorate. Graze it as long as you can. By then your probably getting some green anyway.


I'm thinking if this will hold out until march 1st, I can turn them back in to the shorter pastures which should be greening up by then. Sound about right?

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Re: Fescue stockpile guys....need advice

Post by Midtenn » Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:18 pm

Banjo wrote:I think I would try to figure a way to at least cut it in half with an electric fence of some kind.


You guys got me thinking on that for next year.

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Re: Fescue stockpile guys....need advice

Post by kenny thomas » Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:24 pm

Midtenn wrote:
kenny thomas wrote:That's hard to figure. Each farm is so different.
I fed hay during November and part of December. I still unroll a little because the protein is so high they don't need a belly full of it.
With poly wire you would be surprised what you can do. But if you can't it just means a little more waste. By March even the fescue will start to deteriorate. Graze it as long as you can. By then your probably getting some green anyway.


I'm thinking if this will hold out until march 1st, I can turn them back in to the shorter pastures which should be greening up by then. Sound about right?

If yours looks like mine that's entirely possible.
My thoughts only, don't bet the farm on them. KT

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Re: Fescue stockpile guys....need advice

Post by kenny thomas » Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:28 pm

Midtenn wrote:
Banjo wrote:I think I would try to figure a way to at least cut it in half with an electric fence of some kind.


You guys got me thinking on that for next year.

Do some planning and it will impact how much you feed greatly. Add some Urea and you will make 4 times as much forage and also add to the protein. And the time of year that you take the cattle off of it makes it perfect for stockpiling. Talk the hunters into paying for some clover to add in and make it even better for them and you.
My thoughts only, don't bet the farm on them. KT

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What about grass tetany?

Post by Midtenn » Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:34 pm

When coming off of short pastures and hay and moving to stockpiled fescue. I have been keeping mineral out, but not hi-mag. Cows have 3 month old calves.

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Re: Fescue stockpile guys....need advice

Post by kenny thomas » Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:37 pm

I keep out a good mineral but with all the rain and warm weather we have had I got some high mag. I still feel a good mineral is probably enough
My thoughts only, don't bet the farm on them. KT

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