Summer Reservations: July 2014

This seems like the coolest summer ever! With August upon us, I’m still cautiously optimistic that it won’t be the typical heat wave. Seven inches of rain last week was heaven-sent. If you’re also experiencing greener pastures at this time, be mindful to avoid overgrazing. Forage plants need recovery time between grazing cycles to allow the energy gathered from photosynthesis to rebuild the root system. This can vary with species and climate or soil conditions. Plants weakened by drought or other stresses can put out a lot of new growth in these unseasonably spring-like conditions with a still fragile root system and actually suffer a sudden catastrophic collapse with excessive grazing pressure. I would recommend management intensive, rotational paddock-shift cell grazing as opposed to continuous grazing. Cross-fencing for more grazing control is a very wise and productive practice. This can also be accomplished by planting living hedgerows which are actually more cost effective than traditional fence construction.
It is a good time to chisel plow or aerate the ground if you have soil compaction issues (most places do). This helps rain to soak in and roots to sink more deeply plus improves nutrient uptake by the plants. All of these equate to more forage which is money in your pocket. Take care of the land and it will take care of you.
It’s also time to start planning to plant cool season food plots.

Keep up the good work and give me a call if I can be of service!

Ben Tyler
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