Second, mowing cuts down forage as it cuts down weeds. Years ago Dr. David Bade, an agronomist with the Texas Agricultural Experiment Station, looked at forage response to chemical verses mechanical weed control. In a wet year under fertilized conditions, shredding increased forage production by 2,500 pounds and reduced weeds by 5,200 pounds per acre. However, early herbicide application increased forage production by 5,700 pounds and reduced weeds by 7,400 pounds per acre. In a dry year, shredding actually decreased forage production by 70 pounds per acre, while early herbicide application increased forage production by 1,500 pounds per acre. 

And finally, almost all major weeds and brush will re-grow after mowing. With weeds this means that a weedy field stays weedy, but when dealing with brush species this can cause serious problems for any future control measures a producer may implement. 

Texas A&M AgriLife Extension publications “Chemical Weed and Brush Control Suggestions for Rangeland B-1466” and “Suggestions for Weed Control in Pastures and Forages B-5038” are good resources for making weed and brush control decisions. Also, forage producers will have an opportunity to attend the Grass Grower’s Gathering to be held at the Johnny Calderon Building in Robstown, Texas on March 27.  In addition to weed control, produces will also have an opportunity to learn about fertility management, forage selection options, assessing forage value, and dealing with forage production risk. For more information on the Grass Grower’s Gathering or weed and brush management contact us at 361.767.5223 or on the web at http://nueces.agrilife.org/.

 

Also of interest:

Improving forage, livestock production begins with the soil

Texas NRCS Promotes Riparian Areas

Consider resistance in weed management strategies