Iowa Learning Farms hosted webinar on Wednesday, August 26 about a current research project that assesses forage quality and potential yield of various annual crops. The benefits of incorporating annual forages is that they increase farm enterprise flexibility, extend the grazing season and provide a high-quality forage source, reduce weed pressure, and provide soil health and water quality benefits.
The objectives of the research project are to compare forage yield and nutritional value, determine nutrient removal, and provide producer education. Erika Lundy, Extension Beef Specialist at Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, explained the first-year results from this research project. The cool and warm season forage yields for the first year of the research project showed a benefit from applying nitrogen. Lundy also shared the forage quality measurements for the warm and cool season annuals, and compared those measurements to pasture quality.
During the webinar, Lundy also explained some of the best management practices for using annual forages, and touched on the economics of grazing. This research is part of a four-year project and more data will be coming out over the next couple years. The team will also look at soil nutrient loss when forages are mechanically harvested and will incorporate producer education and demonstrations to share the research results.
To learn more about the research into evaluating annual forages, watch the full webinar here!
Join us on Wednesday, September 2 at noon for a webinar titled “Long-Term Impacts of 4R Nitrogen Management Practices and Cover Crops on Nitrate-N Loss” presented by Matt Helmers, Director of the Iowa Nutrient Research Center.