Improve Hay in the Field and at Harvest with Culbac Products
As farmers in the Upper Midwest and elsewhere in the U.S. begin baling the first hay cutting of the season, we thought it may be helpful to share two ways in which two different Culbac® products can improve the hay crop now and at the next cutting.
Add Culbac® Hay Treatment as a PreservativeIncluding a hay preservative into your forage production program will allow you to bale at higher moisture levels. So what benefits are there to baling high-moisture hay? The answer is many, including:
- Increased yield through reduced field losses
- Maximized nutrient value by reduced leaf shatter
- Inhibition of mold and heat damage during storage
- Reduced number of days between cutting and baling
- Enhanced regrowth of hay plant by removing windrow sooner
- Decreased weather risk due to shorter curing time
To prevent heat damage or spoilage of high-moisture hay during storage, it is necessary to apply a preservative to it either at cutting or when baling. There are a number of hay inoculants on the market ranging from microbial inoculants to propionic acids. Many of these have some big drawbacks: inoculants are generally not considered to be reliable hay preservatives while propionic acid can be very hazardous to users without proper safety precautions.
Culbac® forage preservatives are abiotic fermentation products that provide the protection of propionic acid without the risks to people and equipment. Culbac® forage preservatives can be should be applied on hay ranging in moisture from 16% - 22%, depending hay and bale type, at either the swather or baler.
Culbac® Hay – Liquid Hay Treatment is applied onto hay at the rate of 2.6 fluid ounces per ton. To obtain optimal coverage, the one gallon of the product should be mixed with 11.5 gallons of water. One quart of that mixture will treat one ton of hay.
Culbac® Hay – Dry Hay Treatment needs to be applied to hay at the rate of 0.4 lbs. per ton with a metering device. One 25 lbs. bag of Culbac® Hay – Dry Hay Treatment will treat 62.5 tons of hay.
Apply Culbac® Plant Solution as a Biostimulant
After the first cutting of hay is removed from the field, farmers can improve the quality of their alfalfa stand through a foliar application of Culbac® Plant Solution. This all-natural biostimulant provides an ideal blend of bioactive compounds to encourage vigorous regrowth of the alfalfa plant. Past university trial work has found that alfalfa treated with Culbac® Plant Solution can post significantly higher yields, crude protein and dry matter content.
For optimal performance, Culbac® Plant Solution should be applied to alfalfa at the rate of 16 fluid ounces per acre twice per year, after the first and third cuttings. It is compatible with other production chemicals, including pesticides, fertilizers and surfactants.
1 Undersander D (1999) Hay Desiccants and Preservatives, University of Wisconsin Extension, www.uwex.edu/ces/forage/pubs/preserv.htm. Accessed 11 August 2015.
2 Miller, Dr. Darrell, Culbac® Alfalfa Foliar Spray Experiment, University of Illinois, Urbana – Champaign, 1978 (TA154); Oplinger, Dr. Edward, Foliar Application of Alfalfa on Vernal Alfalfa, University of Wisconsin, 1976 (TA108).