Monday, October 17, 2011

Sorghum Harvest

These past few days in Northwest Arkansas have been perfect for harvesting our corn and sorghum silage crops that will be used to feed our dairy cows through the next two seasons.  We feel fortunate that we have any crops to harvest considering the flooding in the spring that delayed crop planting and the severe summer drought. Actually, we are amazed that we have such a great crop of sorghum!

Today I drove to the field where Ryan and our two sons were harvesting the sorghum. Standing next to the plants, the seed heads at the top of the plants towered more than two feet above my head.  Both stem and seed head are chopped together and will provide energy and other nutrients when added to our cows diet.

After the silage is cut and blown into the truck, it will be hauled and packed into the silo and allowed to ferment for a period of time. Before we feed this silage to the cows, a sample will be sent to the lab for a nutritional analysis for our dairy nutritionist to use in designing a nutritious diet that utilizes the feed we have available to meet the specific nutritional needs of our cows.

As I watched the chopper moving up and down the field rows and the trucks filling up with silage, I know there was a big smile on my face as I watched my family working together to feed our cows  and thinking about how our  cows would enjoy eating this labor of love!


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