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What is the best hay grass that I can grow?

Hay in the field

First, don't confuse best with most. Also, you must have well-drained land to grow better hay grasses.

Bahiagrass grows all over south Mississippi, but it might not make the highest quality hay. Dallisgrass grows better than bahiagrass and bermudagrass on moist bottom soils, but ergot in the seed heads may be a problem in hay. Hybrid and improved vegetative bermudagrasses will produce a large quantity of high quality hay, but it usually requires more management than do other summer grasses.

Horse owners usually prefer a weed free, high quality bermudagrass hay, whereas cattlemen may settle for less at a lower price.

 
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News

A single caterpillar rests on a blade of grass.
Filed Under: Insects-Forage Pests, Management - Forages, Insects-Home Lawns, Insects-Pests August 11, 2021

Lawns, pastures and even winter food plots are at risk as an insect army advances across much of the state in higher than normal numbers. Blake Layton, entomologist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said fall armyworms are the most damaging insect pests of bermudagrass hayfields and pastures

Filed Under: Farming, Forages March 19, 2021

PINEY WOODS, Miss. -- Farmers preparing for the growing season will benefit from a wide variety of topics at the Alliance of Sustainable Farms field day March 29.

Subjects include spring preparations for grazing, growing quality hay, cover crops, and native plants and pollinators. Participants will also learn how to calibrate a no-till drill.

A brown caterpillar hangs upside down on a curving blade of grass.
Filed Under: Insects-Forage Pests, Insects-Home Lawns, Turfgrass and Lawn Management September 22, 2020

Every year, lawns and pastures become targets for late-summer grass-eating caterpillars, making it important to watch for the usual suspects and some culprits that are less common.

Rows of peanut plants.
Filed Under: Agriculture, Agricultural Economics, Corn, Cotton, Peanuts, Rice, Soybeans, Wheat, Forages July 6, 2020

Cotton and corn acreage in Mississippi are more than 30% below March projections, while growers of soybeans and peanuts planted much more than initially forecasted.

Graphic showing 2020 planting intentions
Filed Under: Agriculture, Corn, Cotton, Peanuts, Rice, Soybeans, Forages, Coronavirus March 31, 2020

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Weather always plays a role in the spring planting decisions of Mississippi row-crop producers, but the market impact of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is another variable they will have to consider in 2020.

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Your Extension Experts

Portrait of Dr. Rocky Lemus
Extension/Research Professor
Grazing Systems, hay production, forage fertility, forage quality and utilization, alfalfa productio
Portrait of Dr. Brett Rushing
Assoc Ext/Res Prof & Fac Coord
Native grasses, forages, grazing management, conservation crops, biofuel crops