After your forages are harvested is a good time for you and your BioAg consultant to evaluate your forage program and your crop ration.
Evaluate Your Forage
It takes some time to evaluate what you have for forages and to what groups of animals they would best be fed. Some dairy producers have had the experience of feeding more alternative annual forage varieties due to the improved crop rotation and soil health. These dairy producers have been pleasantly surprised by the digestibility of their crops if …
Calcium: The Trucker of All Nutrients
First, we need to start in the soil. Calcium has many roles in the soil. Calcium aids in maintaining soil physical properties, and in reclaiming sodic soils. Calcium contributes to soil fertility by helping maintain a flocculated clay and therefore provides more aeration. Soil structure and water holding capacity are improved when soils are rich in calcium. Calcium also stimulates the growth of beneficial soil microorganisms, including nitrogen-fixing bacteria, and helps counteract toxins in the soil and in the plant.
To make improvements to dairy farm margins in challenging times, dairies should look “lower” to increase profitability — all the way down to the ground, according to Midwestern BioAg’s nutritionist.
“If you grow your own forages,” says the BioAg nutritionist, “we can help you improve profitability by building a fertility plan to grow a better quality, higher-yielding crop. There’s a lot of revenue potential in the soil, and we can help you unlock it.”
By taking a systems approach to dairy farm management, Midwestern BioAg consultants …
When Gary Zimmer was first looking for a calcium-based product to improve his soil quality, he discovered Bio-Cal®. He noticed remarkable improvements to his soil quality, as well as forage yield and quality, soon after the first application to his hay fields. Bio-Cal is now known for its proven benefits for yield and quality on forages and is also an excellent soil conditioner that improves water infiltration and soil structure – benefits that any crop can take advantage of!
Calcium plays a vital role in plant growth, specifically cell wall formation, cell division and pollination. It also signals plants to respond to drought and heat stress, activates many plant enzyme systems and helps plants absorb other nutrients. Calcium also promotes healthy soil structure by loosening soils and stabilizing organic matter, which increases soil water- and nutrient-holding capacity.
When evaluating calcium needs on your farm, we recommend looking at three key factors on your soil test:
Findings from an alfalfa fertility study show Midwestern BioAg’s Bio-Cal® can increase forage yields by 10.7 percent when used in combination with a conventional alfalfa fertility program. The study is conducted in partnership with the independent Great Lakes Agricultural Research Service in Delavan, Wisconsin, and will run for an additional two years to track long-term yield performance and soil health benefits.
“Bio-Cal is time tested and field proven,” said Iowa-based Midwestern BioAg sales consultant Firman Hershberger.