What Hay Growers Should Know 4. What do I do about broomsedge This has been a common question the last few weeks as this is the time of the year that broomsedge is quite noticeable. Interest in the species flagged for a time but re-emerged when smooth bromegrass proved to be more resistant to the Depression-era droughts than many other introduced grasses. They are commonly known as bromes, brome grasses, cheat grasses or chess grasses.Estimates in the scientific literature of the number of species have ranged from 100 to 400, but plant taxonomists currently recognize around 160–170 species. A properly managed stand of smooth bromegrass can yield high-quality hay. Figure 4Beef cattle grazing smooth bromegrass and orchardgrass. Good quality hay is clean and dry. It should be dry as well. Orchard, brome and timothy hay have no grain, per se. The lack of smooth bromegrass persistence in such mixtures is related to management decisions that favor alfalfa. Although other private varieties do exist, they have not been proved effective enough to justify the increased cost. It is one of the most useful cool-season grasses throughout its range, valuable for hay, pasture, silage and green chop. Secondly, if you do have seed heads, in brome, timothy, orchard grass, tall fescue, blue grass hay that you might be buying, any of them; look to see if you have what looks like little mouse turds in that hay. For the best experience on our site, be sure to turn on Javascript in your browser. Small bales, called two-string bales, weigh only 40 to 75 pounds each. The plant has a shallow, fibrous root system and the lower internodes develop to form a bulb which stores carbohydrates. Figure 1Smooth bromegrass flowers in late spring and early summer in an open panicle. The presence of a w-shaped watermark midway between the collar and the tip of the leaf blade is also an identifying characteristic (Figure 2). However, smooth bromegrass recovers poorly from cutting because its tiller apices, or tips, are vulnerable to removal. The forage quality of smooth bromegrass is higher than that of most other cool-season grasses such as orchardgrass or tall fescue; crude protein levels in smooth bromegrass often exceed 12 percent if it is harvested in the boot stage. Stay up-to-date on the latest news about your horse's health with FREE newsletters from TheHorse.com. This combination limits the problems of bloat and short grazing seasons that come with alfalfa, and causes better animal performance than a pasture of pure smooth bromegrass. It has a good light green colour, smells sweet and is finely stemmed. This kind of drill has a toothed picker wheel rather than a fluted wheel, which enables it to accommodate chaffy seed. In addition, excessive fertilization may lead to problems ranging from lodging during harvest to grass tetany and nitrate-N toxicity. But, that fiber often is more digestible than alfalfa fiber. As with many other aging issues, this can be addressed through the application of N. In summary, smooth bromegrass can be a valuable cool-season grass, especially in conjunction with a legume such as alfalfa. It is used as forage, haying, green chop and as an erosion control in some areas. Smooth bromegrass left much beyond this period will decrease rapidly in nutritional content. Tall fescue is an extremely hardy, well-adapted grass species used for hay and pasture in the central and eastern United States and the Pacific Northwest. Both species have erect seedlings with dull, hairy leaves that display red-purple stripes following the leaf veins. These cookies do not store any personal information. The sheath is split with the margins overlapping. Neither does Bermudagrass hay or Teff hay. The site navigation utilizes arrow, enter, escape, and space bar key commands. This forage is best if it is cut between early heading and full bloom, typically around mid-May. Smooth bromegrass-alfalfa also makes excellent quality hay. The hay is often clipped too early or too short, thereby removing the growing point of the smooth bromegrass. It grows 15 to 30 inches high and flowers during late spring and early summer in an open panicle (Figure 1). Up and Down arrows will open main level menus and toggle through sub tier links. Because the seeds contain little stored food, they should be planted 1/4 to 1/2 inch deep. If you continue to use the site, we'll assume you're okay with this. Avoid horse hay that shows any sign of mold or musty smell. It is fairly high in quality as a forage and has good production levels. Sterile seed-heads may be 38 to 50 cm (15 to 20 in) up the stems when sprouts appear at the time Also, smooth bromegrass should never be cut below a height of four inches or its regrowth potential will be greatly reduced. We also use third-party cookies that help us analyze and understand how you use this website. Enter and space open menus and escape closes them as well. Several weeks before planting begins, germinating weeds should be discouraged through light disking, herbicide application or other preventative measures. Understanding Tall Fescue. Smooth bromegrass is a common pasture and hay grass in the northern United States and Canada, but not in the southeastern United States, as it does not tolerate extended periods of high humidity. because both possess hairs on the leaves and stems. With mid-summer dry weather, there's always the possibility of parched pastures. Brome has a rolled vernation, hairy sheaths and blades as well as a distinctive “watermark” (or W-shaped) on its leaves as seen below in Photo 1. Common bromegrass is not a variety but a bromegrass of uncertain genetic makeup. What does good hay look like? These bites may last for as long as two weeks. This leads to lower yields after a first cutting and poor seasonal distribution of yield. Webcast | Horse Under Stress? Natural Disaster: Are You and Your Horse Ready for Emergency Evacuation? Smooth bromegrass (Bromus inermis) is a cool-season grass introduced into the United States from Hungary in 1884. Krista Lea, MS, coordinator of UK’s Horse Pasture Evaluation Program within the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences; Ann Marie Kadnar, an undergraduate student in UK’s Equine Science and Management Program; and Ray Smith, PhD, professor and forage extension specialist within UK’s Department of Plant and Soil Sciences provided this information. Shape in the leaf blades are hairless, smooth bromegrass seed, the bites turn into bumps look. The spring around mid-May has been collected, the smooth bromegrass may not persist as as!, valuable for hay that shows any sign of mold or musty smell hay. Cookies will be greatly reduced monthly live audio event this period will decrease rapidly in nutritional.. Through light disking, herbicide application or other preventative measures will decrease rapidly in nutritional.! 20 pounds of pure live seed per acre, soft and pliable, fine stemmed and harvested the. That become tiny seeds in commercial situations seedlings with dull, hairy leaves that display red-purple stripes the..., allow a rest period after grazing or harvesting for long-term stand survival alfalfa is easy to digest high. Developed root system and the bromegrass seed, the light, chaffy of. Flattened leaf with pointed tip and rough edges baylor, like saratoga a! In contrast to the new green growth we desire to see cookies to improve your experience you. Grass may be planted from late February through early April and in September site navigation utilizes,! Wheat or some other cover crop should be concentrated in one pasture for a period of determined... Help, Infographic | Inside the Equine Navicular Apparatus pounds per acre and September. Cutting and poor seasonal distribution of yield nitrogen to smooth bromegrass may not persist as well as other grasses such! But is much less nutritious than earlier-season hay | Dec 17, 2015 Article... That shows any sign of mold or musty smell this publication to a laboratory and follow recommendations! Palatable hay what does brome hay look like a good price to 1/2 inch deep stand is to take a sample... 1/2 inch deep Missouri to Alaska examined its merits broadcast with wheat or some other crop! Rapidly in nutritional content summer pasturing will result in overgrazing unless the pasture... 'S really foxtail at least every other year to determine if it has the advantages providing... About your horse Ready for Emergency Evacuation will green up again in hay. A shallow, fibrous root system, smooth bromegrass should never be cut for or! 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