Quantcast

Jump to content




Sponsors

Today's birthdays

No members are celebrating a birthday today

Recent Topics


Photo
- - - - -

bermuda grass varities


  • Please log in to reply
18 replies to this topic

#1 LaneFarms

LaneFarms

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 291 posts
  • LocationChiefland, Florida

Posted 14 November 2010 - 08:36 AM

What is your favorite variety and why? We cut alot of Alicia, due to how easy it is to grow and cure in our humid summer conditions, but alicia has some major drawbacks do to its lack of nutrient content. I started me a seed patch of Russell last year thanks to scrapiron and am looking at other potential varieties and just wanted to see what everyone else liked and disliked. Its easy to read all the university studies but they may not be real world info.

#2 hay wilson in TX

hay wilson in TX

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 1,277 posts

Posted 14 November 2010 - 09:22 AM

Bermudagrass varieties are greatly dependent on micro climate and soil type.
For me it is difficult to do better than coastal bermudagrass. Even though Tifton 85 has the numbers to prove it's superiorly.
HERE Alicia is better adapted for grazing than for hay. Though there are some 50 year old stands of Alicia that are in hay production.

Florida has a number of very knowledgeable Forage Specialist. Check with your County Agent for their names and address.

#3 Mike120

Mike120

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 1,551 posts
  • LocationHockley, TX

Posted 14 November 2010 - 10:06 AM

I prefer Tifton 85 because I've had very good yields from it. I've got a field I'm preping for spring but haven't decided what I'll put in yet. If I can find decent sprigs and a reliable sprigger I'll probably use T-85 again. Otherwise, my backup plan is leaning towards Comanche Bermuda.

#4 vhaby

vhaby

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 473 posts
  • LocationNE of Tyler, TX

Posted 15 November 2010 - 10:14 AM

A forage physiologist once wrote that the "Queen of Forages" (alfalfa) has a new king (Tifton 85 bermudagrass). But, in humid regions, Tifton 85 must be cut timely or its vigorous growth will create large stems that are difficult to dry for hay. Timely harvest means about every three weeks during the active growing season.

#5 vhaby

vhaby

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 473 posts
  • LocationNE of Tyler, TX

Posted 15 November 2010 - 10:22 AM

A forage physiologist once wrote that the "Queen of Forages" (alfalfa) has a new king- Tifton 85. But, in humid regions, Tifton 85 needs to be timely harvested, like about every three weeks. If allowed to grow longer during active growing periods, like about for five to six weeks, the stems become so rank that this grass is difficult to dry for hay, and even difficult to cut, rake, and bale.

#6 Mike120

Mike120

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 1,551 posts
  • LocationHockley, TX

Posted 15 November 2010 - 12:29 PM

I usually cut it every 25 - 30 days depending on the growth & weather. It loves fertilizer and it will get stemy so you have to watch it. I try to cut early the first few cuttings in the spring when there's lots of moisture and can wait until later in the summer when it gets drier and the growth slows down. If it gets too stemy the cows don't even like it.

#7 jdhayboy

jdhayboy

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 275 posts
  • LocationHockley, Tx

Posted 15 November 2010 - 10:16 PM

"If it gets to stemmy cows wont even eat it" ain't that the truth!! I heard a cow man one time say "You wanna starv a cow, feed it tifton." I had a laugh about that. I'm not a big fan of tifton 85 but it is a good variety with excellent nutrient content. Due to its stemminess and coarsness a lot of horse people don't really care for it because in my opinion they bought it from someone who didn't in the proper time frame or maybe baled it a lil early, so they get a bad impression of it. I personally prefer Jiggs, it holds good color, has good nutrient content and cuts well even if starts getting a lil rank. Alicia grass is wanting to lay over after about 3 weeks and then proceeds to get a dead bottom. If your baling horse sq bales i would stick with coastal or jiggs. We have all 4 of the grasses and jiggs my #1 with coastal running a close, close 2nd.

#8 vhaby

vhaby

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 473 posts
  • LocationNE of Tyler, TX

Posted 16 November 2010 - 10:16 AM

I know that this is a haying blog site, but one of the best uses for Tifton 85 is for grazing. Research conducted by forage/animal interface scientists at Texas A&M- Overton, showed stocker weight gains approaching 1,000 lb/acre in 90-day grazing when the cattle were supplemented at 0.8% of body weight per head per day. To read about this work, click on Home

Once on this web site, click on "Center Publications" and then on "Agrilife Article Search Database"

Once in the database, do a search for grazing studies, or many other soils, forage, and cattle studies done at Texas A&M- Overton with state-wide cooperation from other research and extension personnel in the Texas A&M System.

This Texas A&M center has produced some really outstanding results in the above mentioned areas (in my humble opinion.)

Guess I'd better get out and get some work done before people begin to think that I'm a desk jockey.

Edited by vhaby, 16 November 2010 - 10:19 AM.


#9 Mike120

Mike120

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 1,551 posts
  • LocationHockley, TX

Posted 16 November 2010 - 12:06 PM

Due to its stemminess and coarsness a lot of horse people don't really care for it because in my opinion they bought it from someone who didn't in the proper time frame or maybe baled it a lil early, so they get a bad impression of it.


For the most part, all I do is horse hay but I feed it all and rarely sell it unless I have a surplus. That's not very often and I just bought 1,000 "insurance" bales yesterday to make sure I don't run short. I'll sell any surplus in the spring when everyone else is out and the demand is up.

This year my daughter told me to let it go a little longer so they won't eat it as fast. Last year I was cutting every 20-23 days (when the weather allowed) and they loved it. My last choice for hay is Coastal. From a grower's perspective it's a great grass with little trouble to maintain, but from a feeder's perspective you have to watch them closer for colic. Most people around here let the Coastal get a bit too mature before they bale it, with T-85 you can't afford to and it's very evident in the bales. Unfortunately, most horse owners don't know what they are looking at and can only go on what they hear.

#10 dubltrubl

dubltrubl

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 245 posts
  • LocationSouthwest Louisiana

Posted 16 November 2010 - 06:40 PM

Mike,
I noticed in one of your posts from the past that you tried some Cheyenne. I'm curious how it compares to T 85 or coastal. From what I read, the newer Cheyenne II looks promising. I have a little 13 acre patch I'm planning on planting in the spring and haven't made up my mind yet on what to try. T85 is probably not a good choice for me, since due to my work schedule, I probably need to plan on cuttings every 5-6 weeks. Plus, I presently don't know of anyone near me that sprigs Tifton 85. Anybody have any experience with cheyenne? Seems to me, for a small patch, seeding makes a lot of sense.

#11 Mike120

Mike120

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 1,551 posts
  • LocationHockley, TX

Posted 17 November 2010 - 09:31 AM

I put in two paddocks of Cheyenne about 5 years ago. I was giong to do a few more but couldn't get the seed. For a while you could only get it as part of a blend. Now you can get Cheyenne II, and everything I've read says it's better than the original. Except for those two paddocks, all of my others are Common Bermuda. The Cheyenne grows faster and thicker and has held up well, but I need to renovate those paddocks in the spring. Hopefully I can save it, I do like it!

Cheyenne is expensive and it's a coated seed, so you only get about 12.5# in a 25# bag. If you do 13 acres I'd recommend using a no-till drill. I've got a 17 acre field that I'm doing in the spring and a 11 acre field that I might redo. If I can't find sprigs/sprigger, I'm leaning towards Comanche. I'd just mix it with the fertilizer and spread it with the buggy. The Giant in it gives you good first year yields and the people I know that put it in last year are very happy with it.

You might also look at Jiggs. JDHAYBOY, and a lot of others love it. It's a great grass and seems to be pretty easy to establish. Everyone I know started it with tops which is a lot easier and cheaper than spriggs.
  • dubltrubl likes this

#12 hay wilson in TX

hay wilson in TX

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 1,277 posts

Posted 17 November 2010 - 05:31 PM

A 28 day harvest cycle will result in dairy quality bermudagrass. It will make milk but will have more energy and protein than farm or ranch horses need. You may be getting 18% even 20% CP. Cut on a 42 day cycle for 12% CP, better total yield, and a hay that does not require limit feeding. This is presuming you do your part doing the baling.

I used to get feed value hay testing, but my customers are interested in Crude Protein at the best. So I get a plant analysis run, have a good feel for my fertility and multiply the percent protein by 6.25 for the Crude Protein. ( N % X 6.25 = CP % )
  • LaneFarms likes this

#13 haybine

haybine

    Junior Member

  • Members
  • 5 posts

Posted 25 November 2010 - 04:09 AM

We planted a field in sungrazer 777 bermuda three years ago. Then another field in Jiggs the following year. They seem to have quite different growing characteristics but I am quite pleased with both. My ground is mostly clay. With optimal conditions the sungrazer actually produced more on one of our cuttings this year but less on average. And the Jiggs seems to be less thirsty.

I went with the Sungrazer seed at first because everyone said how expensive it was to sprig. But a local guy planted the tops for $100 dollars an acre putting out 8 bales per acre. At the price of seed, planting tops actually ended up cheaper. And Jiggs established a lot quicker.

#14 Mike120

Mike120

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 1,551 posts
  • LocationHockley, TX

Posted 25 November 2010 - 10:35 AM

I went with the Sungrazer seed at first because everyone said how expensive it was to sprig. But a local guy planted the tops for $100 dollars an acre putting out 8 bales per acre. At the price of seed, planting tops actually ended up cheaper. And Jiggs established a lot quicker.


If the field is prepared properly, PH correct, fertilized, get good spriggs/tops, and you get rain, I believe the spriggs will establish faster. I know a guy that has 600 acres of Jiggs under irrigation South of Richmond/Rosenburg....He had 150 acres done with tops that didn't establish because the sprigger used dead tops. That was an expensive lesson and why I'm pretty picky about finding a decent sprigger, seeing the spriggs/tops and the field they come from. There are a couple of fields down the road from me that are baled and sold as Jiggs, this time of year they are covered with seedheads....They look like Common to me. They're productive fields though.

At the end of the day, if done correctly, either way can result in an established, productive field. Both ways come with their individual set of risks and often success is determined by how well you mitigate the risks and a certain amount of luck. If the grass is managed, cut/dried, and baled correctly my animals will eat it, be healthy, and it keeps my feed bill within a reasonable range. To me, the type of grass is almost irrelevant. The issue is what will grow, in the field, in my climate and produce a reasonable amount of quality hay, for a reasonable cost/effort. We import/export horses all over the world.....they are very adaptive critters and can thrive in a wide range of environments. When it comes to forage, how it's produced is often more important to them than what is produced. It's the horse owners who have the weird ideas.....

#15 Mike120

Mike120

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 1,551 posts
  • LocationHockley, TX

Posted 25 November 2010 - 11:32 AM

A 28 day harvest cycle will result in dairy quality bermudagrass. It will make milk but will have more energy and protein than farm or ranch horses need. You may be getting 18% even 20% CP. Cut on a 42 day cycle for 12% CP, better total yield, and a hay that does not require limit feeding.


We watch the CP levels and adjust the requirements with pellets. These are not farm/ranch horses. The issue was that the ones that are showing spend a lot of time in stalls (summer to protect from sunbleach, winter under lights to suppress a winter coat). They ate the hay too fast and would get bored with nothing to munch on. 42 days with T-85 and you would likely starve cows.

#16 dubltrubl

dubltrubl

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 245 posts
  • LocationSouthwest Louisiana

Posted 12 December 2010 - 08:59 AM

You might also look at Jiggs. JDHAYBOY, and a lot of others love it. It's a great grass and seems to be pretty easy to establish. Everyone I know started it with tops which is a lot easier and cheaper than spriggs.


Well, it looks like I'm going to try some Jiggs. I found a local sprigger that has it, and his prices are very very reasonable. I looked at his fields and equipment already and I like what I see. I've never tried Jiggs, and I've never planted roots, so this will be a new experience for me. The plan is to get them in around late Feb. to early March. The field is ready with the exception of a bit of smoothing via a land level, (this field was a former rice field that has been fallow for 10yrs or more), and an additional pass with the culti-packer. Keeping my fingers crossed,,;) Thanks for the suggestions all.
Steve

#17 jdhayboy

jdhayboy

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 275 posts
  • LocationHockley, Tx

Posted 12 December 2010 - 11:19 AM

I think Jiggs would work well in an old rice field... In my experience Jiggs tends to like lower tighter ground vs deep sand soils. One thing to know about old rice fields ( you may already know all these things) is that they tend have a really low ph so you would definetly want to pull some samples and probly put some lime out before planting. We also have a lot of old rice fields ourselves and have planted about a hundred acres in hay. One thing we have problems with in old rice fields is common bermuda coming in and trying to take over. I believe, and maybe Vhaby or someone could verify this for me, that common is a grass that can grow in very acidic soils, where your other varieties of bermuda cannot. Hence, the importance of having your ph in line so you have less competition from common.
  • dubltrubl likes this

#18 hay wilson in TX

hay wilson in TX

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 1,277 posts

Posted 12 December 2010 - 11:55 AM

42 days with T-85 and you would likely starve cows.
That response puzzles me.
I find it difficult to put up coastal bermudagrass with less than 10% CP, let when trying to grow 12% CP. When the CP is above 12% CP I lose yield with no improvement in price.
Possibly you are looking at a different soil than the CenTex Black0ands, here in Bell County.
If the nitrogen starts running out after 3 weeks I can see how a lower quality grass hay will be a possibility.

Another possibility may be a loss of leaves with the hay being too dry when raked and or baled.
True a round baler will not test as high as small square bales expecially as the moisture get down into the 12% - 14% moisture level.
When baling in the same field a RB & a Small Sq baler going side by side the Sq bales will test 1% higher than the RBs. When starting when the humidity, at the windrow's level, is 65% RH. The difference will be in 2% higher than the RB's when it is close to being too dry to bale, say 55% RH.

Usually I have to quit baling about noon to keep from shattering the leaves.

To retain the leaves I have to rake at first light, to have enough humidity to have the leaves supple enough to not shatter.

#19 dubltrubl

dubltrubl

    Hay Master

  • Members
  • 245 posts
  • LocationSouthwest Louisiana

Posted 12 December 2010 - 11:55 AM

jdhayboy,
The field has had soil samples taken, and 1 ton/acr lime added as per LSU lab recommendation. It tested at 5.23 PH. It has been identified as a silty loam. I noticed while discing, some spots had more clay than others. The owners have tried planting rice and soybeans in the past with little or no success due to the fairly good slope on this small corner near the local bayou. It actually drains quite well, (maybe too well,we'll see) and we cut some additional drainage after discing. Plan is to hit the field with some weedkiller after some more leveling and culti-packing, then wait some after planting to add some N. I hate to add the N too soon for the exact reasons you stated about common coming up in addition to stimulating weed growth. I did find a little bit of it in the field prior to taking it on. I nailed it with some round-up after the lime application and discing/leveling, but that stuff is tough and I've never known of a way to completedly eradicate it. If anyone knows how, I'd love to be educated. I'm keeping my fingers crossed and hoping for a couple of cuttings on this patch this year. From what some local Jiggs raisers tell me, they really like the stuff, but my experience in hybrid bermuda is mostly confined to Alicia and a natural cross that we have on our own place, so I'm kinda taking a leap of faith. (way outta character for me!,,;) lol ). Any additional advice or pointers are greatly appreciated!!
Steve




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users