Hay is simply dried grass that is baled either in rounds or in squares. During the winter when grass lies dormant, your cattle can still get the benefits of grass by eating hay. You simply cut the grass while it is at its peak, allow it to dry completely, and bale.
Hay requires a pasture of good grasses and dry weather. The last thing you want is for your cut grass to get rained on because the grass will mold. Hay making is farming; you are at the mercy of the weather.
We have not cut hay on our ranch for years. It has been more economical to purchase hay. However after last year’s drought and the fact that the price for hay soared to astronomical heights coupled with the fact that we have been greatly blessed with rain and grass this year, we decided to cut three hay fields on our new ranch.
Farming is always a gamble. You have to watch the weather, keep your eye on your fields, and act in faith. We have finished cutting the grass. It is drying out quickly in this summer heat. Tomorrow we will start baling the hay as long as the weather holds.
Hay is an important part of our grass fed business. It saved the ranch last year when our pastures burned up in the most severe drought on record. During even a mild winter, hay is a staple in our herd’s diet. Since we do not feed grain of any kind to our cattle, dried grasses are their food in the winter.
We are excited to be in this position. Making our own hay illustrates that we have turned a corner in a sense. This year has been completely different than last year. And for that, we are truly thankful.