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Vacation! Fishing! Or….Grazing School?

25 Jul

What does a farmer do on a 103 degree weekend in the middle of the worst drought in 50 years?

After taking care of livestock there are several options: vacation in Canada, trout fishing in the Ozarks, visit neighbor’s swimming pool or even catch up the bookwork in the air conditioned office…my farmers chose to attend the Management Intensive Grazing School.

Evaluating pasture Plants and Weeds and estimating forage yields was easy to do in these conditions…

This event was sponsored by our local Soil and Water Conservation District, the Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Northeast Missouri Extension Councils. It was well-planned and carried-out in spite of the severe drought conditions.

90 percent of class-time was indoors by the air conditioner complete with a delicious supper, light-as-a-feather yummy cinnamon rolls for breakfast and a sandwich luncheon with fantastic brownies and cookies.

Topics included Fence and Watering Facilities in Grazing systems…

Forage Growth and Management, Managing Fescue and Forage Quality, Livestock Nutrition, Stockpiling for Winter Pasture, Evaluation of Farm Resources, Layout and Design of Grazing Systems and Power Fencing were some of the other sessions.

“Extra Crispy”…

While we were braving the waves of heat in the hot sun as we foraged for grasses, legumes, and even weeds on the ridge, the cows were down the hill, resting in the cool shade by the lake.

We soon recovered though… 😉

This is our first real summer of Rotational Grazing and we believe it has extended our pastures during these weeks without rain. We’re thankful for the education and help the Farm Agencies have provided, Maurice Davis’ layout and design and John Turner’s fencing!

How hot is it in your neck of the woods? After we returned home, I found this email in my inbox…

It’s So Hot in MISSOURI that……

· ….the birds have to use potholders to pull the worms out of the ground.
· …..the trees are whistling for the dogs.
· …..the best parking place is determined by shade instead of distance
· ….hot water comes from both taps.
· …..you can make sun tea instantly.
· …..you learn that a seat belt buckle makes a pretty good branding iron.
· …..the temperature drops below 90 F and you feel a little chilly.
· …..you discover that in July it only takes two fingers to steer your car (one on each hand)
· ……you discover that you can get sunburned through your car window.
· …..you actually burn your hand opening the car door.
· …..you break into a sweat the instant you step outside at 5:30 A.M.
· …..you realize that asphalt has a liquid stage.
· …..the potatoes cook underground, so all you have to do is pull one out and add butter.
· …..the cows are giving evaporated milk.

IT’S SO DRY in Missouri that the Baptists are starting to baptize by sprinkling, the Methodists are using wet-wipes, the Presbyterians are giving rain checks, and the Catholics are praying for the wine to turn back into water!

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