|Top quality hay: production and protection|
The reality is there are more hay consumers than hay producers. We sell most of our hay WELL in advance of the feeding season. If you are going to need hay, you need to plan ahead. If you get in a bind, call and we'll see if we can help you out or put you in touch with someone who can.
Laney Farms has a long tradition of producing the finest quality hay for horses and cattle. We have become known in our area for providing a reliable supply of hay for people with both large and small needs.
Types of Grasses
At Laney Farms, we know that to get any good finished product you must start with quality ingredients. We don't bail junk!! For our finest quality horse hays we begin with Russell Bermuda grass fields. Yes, it's that stuff you've been trying to get out of your flower bed since the beginning of time. Bermuda is a thin blade to flexible stalk, light green to gray/green in color. It is considered one of the higher fiber hays. The Russell variety is an Alabama discovery that was released officially in 1995. Russell exhibits most of the desirable traits needed in a hybrid type, including top yield potential and rapid ground covering ability. We also use other fields which are majority Coastal Bermuda grass. All of the fields we cut are treated regularly to block the growth of noxious weeds.
Cutting, Curing, and Bailing
The simple fact is, if we cut the field too early we lose money, and if we cut the field too late we lose money. The balance of producing a grass that is soft and desirable to the animals and producing the most grass as possible is a fine point. Bermuda grass is the softest when young and short, but the grass has not sufficiently absorbed the fertilizers and other nutrients from the ground that are needed for your animals health. A grass that is too long tends to get "stemmy" and very straw like. As a rule of thumb a field is not put on the cutting schedule until the grass is just below the knee (about 20"), then it must be cut before it begins to "lay down" (about 25"). Between those points we begin to watch the weather forecasts. We need either 2 HOT dry days or 3 moderate days without rain to complete the harvesting. As I've told my wife, "hay is not ruined when it gets wet after being cut, but it's kind of like pouring milk on your frosted flakes and then pouring it off and letting the cereal dry out again." Each time the cut grass gets wet a portion of the total nutritional value is lost, so timing of weather patterns is crucial. We begin the bailing process only after the moisture percentage is between 15-20% for round bales and between 10-15% for square bales. The finished bale weights in at ~1,100lbs round and 55lbs square.