Weed of the Week: Crabgrass

Crabgrass is a warm-season annual grass that is commonly found in pastures and hay meadows in parts of Texas. Relative to other warm-season annual grasses, crabgrass has a low- to medium-yield potential but is high in forage quality. As such, it is often a desirable component in pastures and is sometimes planted for forage in pastures. As is the case with many annual grass species, crabgrass is a prolific seed producer which enables new stands to establish in subsequent growing seasons for summer grazing. Due to its high-volume… Read More →

Rained on Hay

After mowing, poor weather and handling conditions can lower hay quality. Rain can cause leaf loss and can leach nutrients from plants during curing. Rain can leach out nutrients and increase dry matter loss from respiration, which is the process by which a plant uses oxygen. Nutrient losses depend on the amount, duration and timing of the rain in relation to cutting time. Purdue University has conducted research on the amount of total digestible nutrients (TDN) and field dry matter lost from hay after a rain. The study… Read More →

Silver Leaf Nightshade

Silver Leaf Nightshade (Solanum elaeagnifolium Cav.) is an upright, usually prickly perennial in the nightshade family. It normally grows 1 to 3 feet tall and reproduces by seed and creeping root stalks. Leaves have a silver color (hence the name) with wavy margins and are lance shaped to narrowly oblong. Flowers are violet or bluish (sometimes white) with yellow centers. The fruits are round and yellow and are present from May to October. The plant has poor forage value for livestock and wildlife and can be poisonous to… Read More →

Weed of the Week: Johnsongrass

Weed of the Week: Johnsongrass (Sorghum halepense): Johnsongrass is a warm season perennial grass that is one of the most common and troublesome weeds in agriculture. It is commonly found on roadsides, pastures and hay fields. It grows erect from 3 to 6 feet. Johnsongrass spreads by seeds and rhizomes (underground stems). The seedhead is a large, open panicle often with a purplish tint. Johnsongrass leaves have a large white midrib and a smooth, glossy appearance. Stems are smooth with no hairs.   Select Herbicide Options: Outrider (for… Read More →

Poultry Litter

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Poultry litter has become a common alternative source of plant nutrients in Central and East Texas. Especially as the poultry industry grows in parts of Central and East Texas. Broiler litter is a mixture of poultry manure, bedding, feathers, and spilled feed. The actual nutrient content of a manure sample varies. Nutrient concentration of broiler litter is variable due to age of bird, composition of the diet, how the manure is handled, and the number of batches of birds raised since the last house clean out. The average… Read More →

Weed of the Week: Broomsedge Bluestem

Broomsedge Bluestem (Andropogon virginicus L.) is a warm season perennial grass found throughout Central and East Texas. Broomsedge growth begins as temperatures consistently stay above 60 degrees F. It produces many seeds that are distributed by wind. It is a poor competitor, has poor nutritive value for livestock and low palatability. Broomsedge can quickly become the dominant species in over-grazed, low pH (< 5.5), low fertility, eroded soils where desired vegetation will not thrive. Since this plant thrives on low pH and low fertility soils, soil testing is… Read More →

Weed Control For Newly Sprigged Bermudagrass

Weed Control for Newly Sprigged Bermudagrass… WEED CONTROL FOR NEWLY SPRIGGED BERMUDAGRASS. “One of the many challenges producers face when establishing a new stand of bermudagrass is initial weed pressure. Prior to land preparation for establishment of sprigs, it is important to eradicate any unwanted vegetation.”     Vanessa Corriher-Olson Forage Extension Specialist Soil & Crop Sciences Overton, TX vacorriher@ag.tamu.edu Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service Texas A&M University System        

Sprayer Calibration

Sprayer Calibration

Sprayer Calibration is a critical step for a pesticide applicator in making sure the correct amount of pesticide is applied to the target site. Calibration is the process by which the amount of pesticide being applied per a unit of area is determined. This step is most often skipped because we get in a hurry, we calibrated it once a long time ago (surely nothing has changed) or we forget. By skipping sprayer calibration the applicator may be applying too much pesticide or not enough pesticide. If too little… Read More →

Weed of the Week: Sedges (Yellow Nutsedge, Purple Nutsedge, Globe Flatsedge)

Yellow Nutsedge (Cyperus esculentus) is often referred to as nutgrass or watergrass. Yellow nutsedge is a perennial plant that reproduces primarily by small underground tubers (called nutlets) that form at the end of underground stems (rhizomes). A single plant can produce several hundred of these tubers throughout the summer. Yellow nutsedge can also spread by rhizomes. Yellow nutsedge can be identified by the triangular shape of its stem as can all sedges. You can feel the shape by rolling the stem in your fingertips. One method of control… Read More →

Timing on Weed Control is Critical

Our human nature is to find a simple, one time solution for our problems. Unfortunately, this simple, one time solution does not exist for weed control in pastures and hay meadows. There are several factors that are important when it comes to weed control. These include:   Weed Identification: We cannot make the best management decisions if we don’t even know what the plant is we are trying to eradicate. Identification will determine the timing of our herbicide application along with the herbicide we choose. There are a… Read More →