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'Hay Day' Offers Opportunity to See Top Quality Forage Farms

'Hay Day' Offers Opportunity to See Top Quality Forage Farms
There's a new format for Forage Day in Indiana this year.

This year's Indiana Forage Day will move from farm to farm during the day instead of being at one location. That's a large departure from forage days of the past!

The headquarters for the Forage Day is the Walk by Faith Community Church near Roann. It's located on State Highway 16, about 10 miles northwest of Wabash. The church is actually on the south edge of town on South Chippewa Street.

Forage day event: Alfalfa will still be an important part of the discussion at this year's forage day, though the format will be different from past years.

Registration and check-in is from 9 to 9:20 a.m. EDT. A chartered bus will take people to the farms if you pre-register before June 18. Others who sign up afterwards can follow in their own vehicles. The cost for the field day is $10. Contact your Extension office about how you sign up for the event and reserve a spot on the bus.

The forage tour will visit Steve Flack's farm, a commercial hay operation. He recently invested in a Steffen big bale conversion system, which will be discussed on the tour.

Stoltzfus' Dairy is the second stop. This is a pasture-based dairy farm. Lunch will be back at the church.

In the afternoon, Jeremy Sweeten will discuss how he harvests baleage to get crops made on time. Demonstrations on baling and wrapping will be underway if weather permits.

Finally, the tour visits a warm-season grass bioenergy site. Purdue University has a grant to study care and management of warm-season grasses, in anticipation of cellulosic ethanol someday becoming a reality. Participants will learn how to properly calibrate a drill for these crops. The plots were established in 2012, but it was a hard year for establishing warm-season grasses.

There are several other plots across the state, including one at the FFA Center at Trafalgar. Watch for more information on these plots later.

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