Weed of the Week: Dallisgrass

Dallisgrass is a warm-season perennial that has grazing potential. Dallisgrass is palatable and has a higher level of nutritive value than bahiagrass and some bermudagrass varieties, and it can retain its nutritive value later into the summer. Dallisgrass, however, produces a lower dry matter yield than some bermudagrass varieties. One concern with dallisgrass is the potential for an “ergot” fungus (Claviceps spp.) to infect seedheads and cause dallisgrass poisoning (also known as dallisgrass staggers). The fungus infects the seedheads typically in late summer or fall. The affected animals… Read More →

Weed of the Week: Grassbur (field sandbur, sandbur, etc.)

Grassbur is a grass weed that is very troublesome in pastures and hay meadows throughout Texas. Most grassburs are easily recognized in the mature stage of growth when the “bur” seed heads become apparent. The bur itself is actually a “capsule” that usually contains from 1 to 3 seeds. We tend to think of the grassbur species as a warm season annual plant. However, many grassburs are classified as perennials because they can survive from one year to the next. The presence of grassburs can be an indication… Read More →

Texas Agriculture Law Blog

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Tiffany Dowell Lashmet is an Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist in Agricultural Law with Texas A&M AgriLife Extension. On her Texas Agriculture Law Blog she recently posted information on Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) Hauling Regulations. Visit her blog linked below for more information.   Revised Outline for Analyzing FMCSA Hauling Regulations   Vanessa Corriher-Olson Associate Professor, Forage Extension Specialist Soil & Crop Sciences Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, Overton,TX vacorriher@ag.tamu.edu 903-834-6191      

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 →

Suns Out, Fertilizer Out?

After a cold, dreary winter we get anxious about our warm season perennial pastures and hay meadows. We start panicking about the winter weeds we see growing, the volunteer ryegrass we see growing and we start making calls to our local fertilizer retailer. Find more information about dealing with volunteer ryegrass here and dealing with winter weeds here. Now, let’s take a moment and talk about the RIGHT time to fertilize our warm season pastures/hay meadows.   First and foremost, soil test. If you have not done so… 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 of the Week: Curly Dock

Curly Dock (Rumex crispus) is a perennial broadleaf plant that usually grows in wet areas and is frequently associated with standing water. Leaves are alternate to one another along the stem forming a rosette. The mature plant stands erect and grows 2 to 5 feet tall. Leaves are alternate to one another along the stem. The small greenish flowers are arranged in dense clusters on elongated stems. The fruiting stem dies back in mid to late summer, and the fruits and stems turn a distinctive rusty brown. New… Read More →

Weed of the Week: Texas groundsel

Texas groundsel or Texas squaw-weed (Senecio ampullaceus) is a cool-season annual broadleaf plant that grows to 12 to 30 inches tall. The plants are often whitish with hair, but can be nearly hairless.  The unlobed, clasping leaves gradually reduce in size toward the top of the plant. Showy yellow flowers are produced in the spring.  Texas groundsel is found in the eastern half of the state and is abundant on sandy soils and may be a predominant species in freshly cleared forest. Members of the genus Senecio can… Read More →

Spring is Here?

With the coming of the First Day of Spring (March 20th) and the most recent warm weather and sunny days we start thinking about our warm season pastures and hay meadows. A few things to keep in mind as our warm season forages begin to break dormancy… Soil Test!  Soil Test!  Soil Test!  If you have not done so for this year, please consider obtaining a soil test now.  There is not much that can be done regarding the high cost of fertilizer, but there is much we can… Read More →

Winter Weeds: Do they matter?

As forage producers, we focus most of our energy on our warm season perennial pastures and hay meadows (bermudagrass, bahiagrass, etc.). That means most of our weed control efforts are also focused on warm season weeds (such as carolina horsenettle, blackberry, etc). Unfortunately, cool season weeds can be just as detrimental to our warm season perennial forages.   Annual ryegrass…a cool season annual forage often utilized by livestock producers for winter grazing. However, it’s often deemed an enemy of many a hay producer in East Texas. Later maturity… Read More →