The Country Diary of a GenX Woman

Planning the Harvest

20131013 019 (2)The oats are looking ready for cutting for hay. Some of the paddock looks like it is browning off already and the forming grain is at the milky stage. Rain is forecast for most of this week with heavy falls due on Friday, so the plan is to mow on Sunday the 20th and bale by Thursday the 24th. The forecasts can shift daily, yesterday it looked like the whole of next week would be dry, but today, light rain has reappeared in the forecast for the end of the week. We can’t leave it much longer as the quality of the hay drops as the grain develops. The best hay is harvested at the watery stage – ie when you squeeze the seed clear liquid comes out, when it gets to milky it is still ok, but when the white milky liquid thickens to a doughy stage it is too late for good hay.

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