Thursday, March 8, 2012

Forage Systems Research Center hosts summer pasture workshop, March 19

The past few summers have been dry and hot across much of the Midwest, leaving many livestock producers short of pasture in July and August. Producers can learn the latest strategies to ensure healthy summer pastures at Forage Systems Research Center’s summer pasture workshop, March 19 at 1:30 p.m.

Located near Linneus, Mo., the Center is one of 17 around the state at which the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources (CAFNR) at the University of Missouri conducts impactful research benefitting Missouri farmers.

A few cows of the herd at the FSRC.
The workshop will begin with presentations, but Superintendent Dave Davis said much of the afternoon will be an open dialogue between producers and researchers. Weather permitting, attendees will take a short tour of FSRC’s pastures.

Robert Kallenbach, MU professor of plant science and forage specialist, will present his research on a variety of summer annual forages, including sorghum-sudangrass with a brown midrib trait, which makes the fiber more digestible by livestock, and the dwarf trait variety that produces less stem and more leaf, making it highly palatable and nutritious. Kallenbach will also discuss interseeding strategies and optimal pasture management to prepare for dry, hot conditions.

Davis said they’ll address the do’s and don’ts of cover cropping as well. “We want to make the mistakes so producers don’t have to,” he said.

Allen Powell has a cow/calf operation near FSRC and sits on its advisory board. Powell said there are many producers in Missouri looking for grazing strategies for the challenging conditions they’ve experienced the last few years. “If we develop healthy soils, that will mean healthy grass, healthy animals and healthy people,” Powell said.

The event is free and open to the public. To register, contact David Davis at or 660-985-5121. For driving directions and other information about FSRC.

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