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Old 06-21-2009, 01:42 PM
 
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are they that much difference taste ?. big kernels sound good to me.

Quote:
with kernels so dented and big that looks like it will rival anything they get at the organic farmers market.

why not planting sweet corns for cows.
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Originally Posted by mkfarnam View Post
AAWWW! Poor city slickers..They don't know the difference between Field corn and Sweet corn..they got some learnin to do.
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Old 06-21-2009, 04:28 PM
 
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Originally Posted by wabanaki View Post
are they that much difference taste ?. big kernels sound good to me. why not planting sweet corns for cows.
You can't eat cow corn. The kernels are big and nicely dented, but its very hard and dry. I have never actually tried it because it looks disgusting just sitting on the stalk. But they are HUGE cobs!

You can't plant sweet corn for cows because the stalk would be much to fibrous. The cow corn has traits that make the entire stalk palatable for the cows...its softer. You have to keep in mind that with sweet corn, you are just taking the kernels or cobs for human consumption. With cows, they eat stalk, leaves, cobs, etc. In order to make it easier for them to eat and digest, the corn is special varieties of silage corn.

The dry-down is different too. With cow corn you can harvest the corn after it has been hit with a good killing frost, but before the stalk is completely brown. Optimum is 66% moisture content because as the feed ferments in the bunker, additional sugar conversion takes place within the feed (its basically sauerkrought for cows) With sweet corn they are looking for complete dry down before harvest.
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Old 06-21-2009, 09:22 PM
 
9,807 posts, read 13,683,788 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrokenTap View Post
You can't eat cow corn. The kernels are big and nicely dented, but its very hard and dry. I have never actually tried it because it looks disgusting just sitting on the stalk. But they are HUGE cobs!

You can't plant sweet corn for cows because the stalk would be much to fibrous. The cow corn has traits that make the entire stalk palatable for the cows...its softer. You have to keep in mind that with sweet corn, you are just taking the kernels or cobs for human consumption. With cows, they eat stalk, leaves, cobs, etc. In order to make it easier for them to eat and digest, the corn is special varieties of silage corn.

The dry-down is different too. With cow corn you can harvest the corn after it has been hit with a good killing frost, but before the stalk is completely brown. Optimum is 66% moisture content because as the feed ferments in the bunker, additional sugar conversion takes place within the feed (its basically sauerkrought for cows) With sweet corn they are looking for complete dry down before harvest.
------"you can't eat cow corn"--
???????????????

We did all the time when I was a kid.

You pick it when the husks are green before it dents while in the milk stage It doesn't taste as good as sweet corn, but it ain't bad.

Some people did plant sweet corn for sileage back when the govt program made you leave set aside acres based on your corn base. Farmers planted those set aside acres in sweet corn ( that was allowed) and chopped those acres for sileage.( you are probably too young to remember that BT )

Sweer corn can't compete with sileage corn due to yield/tonnage.
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Old 06-22-2009, 08:50 AM
 
Location: Oklahoma(formerly SoCalif) Originally Mich,
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We've eaten field corn too and If you've had sweet corn you can tell the difference by the texture. It's tough and the best way to discribe it is, it's like chewing on half cooked spagetti. There's no taste and it sticks to your teeth.

Last edited by mkfarnam; 06-22-2009 at 09:03 AM..
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Old 06-22-2009, 01:42 PM
 
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I never had the pleasure I am afraid, and yes Marmac you are indeed right, I am too young to remember those days. Silly farm boy of the modern era (LOL)

It doesn't surprise me though, but I wonder if you gave a cow or sheep silage corn which is supposed to be more palatable, or sweet corn, which they would eat more of? I am not talking just the cob though, but the whole stalk as that is what they are given.

You would be surprised to hear how many people (farmers even) that think that sheep can only eat hay. My first flock of sheep got hay year round because the place was not big enough to feed all the sheep. You should have seen them chomp down on the corn I gave them...they did not know life could be so good.
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Old 06-22-2009, 07:07 PM
 
Location: Oklahoma(formerly SoCalif) Originally Mich,
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrokenTap View Post
I never had the pleasure I am afraid, and yes Marmac you are indeed right, I am too young to remember those days. Silly farm boy of the modern era (LOL)

It doesn't surprise me though, but I wonder if you gave a cow or sheep silage corn which is supposed to be more palatable, or sweet corn, which they would eat more of? I am not talking just the cob though, but the whole stalk as that is what they are given.

You would be surprised to hear how many people (farmers even) that think that sheep can only eat hay. My first flock of sheep got hay year round because the place was not big enough to feed all the sheep. You should have seen them chomp down on the corn I gave them...they did not know life could be so good.
BT, From what I've heard, and this is more less a question, sheep can be very distructive (like goats). If so, how do you control this?
Or is this a myth?
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Old 06-22-2009, 10:55 PM
 
Location: East Tennessee
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oh my goodness, I remember growing up on a diary farm (was a kid then) and we grew fields and fields of corn for silage
our silage pits were dug into the hillside
when they put the silage in the holes, that was the best thing to jump off the side of the bank into the silage (it was a soft landing)
but let me tell you, we stunk later
but was great fun when you were a kid
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Old 06-23-2009, 02:07 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkfarnam View Post
BT, From what I've heard, and this is more less a question, sheep can be very distructive (like goats). If so, how do you control this?
Or is this a myth?
Oh yeah they can easily overgraze because they eat so much closer to the ground, and because their little mouths are amazingly agile. They can literally sort oats from the chaff in their managers.

In 1947 "the year Maine burned", sheep were at the height of their popularity in Maine. When a severe draught came, the pastures the sheep resided in were left brown and tinder dry. Once the fires sprang up from trains, camp fires and thunder storms, a huge portion of coastal Maine burned.

With the right management though, this can be used to a farmers advantage. Goats browse on brush better then sheep, but sheep still browse. They also love weeds. Got some poison ivy you want to get rid of...get sheep. My sheep will mob graze a patch of poison ivy in a matter of hours. In a few grazing seasons they will rid a field of weeds and leave higher quality grass for cows and whatnot. No need for herbicide to get rid of dandelions and other weeds...sheep improve pastures for free.

I am clearing land right now and it is truly amazing the improvement a flock of sheep can make on a few acres of rough pasture in such a short time. Brush, weeds, and grass are mowed down as never before, and since they poo 85% of what they eat, I am fertilizing it as I go as well!

It can be a challenge to keep the sheep in tight pastures and really get the mob grazing I want, but hopefully I can get some help in this regard soon. As Marmac will tell you, rotational grazing is the key to keeping the sheep happy and the soil and forage in an improved state. But they don't call it MIG (Managed Intensive Grazing) for nothing. It takes time and management skill to pull it off. I won't lie to you, I am struggling with right now. It is not as easy to do as I thought it would be.

My paddocks were too small at first, and I am adding sheep way too fast. My fencing should be better but a need to increase fenced in acres is competing with higher quality fences that need to be installed in already fenced in acres. I'm making sheep management mistakes all over the place but give me 5 years and hopefully I will be doing a lot better.

Sheep are a challenge, but I still like them over cows I think.
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Old 06-23-2009, 08:43 AM
 
Location: Oklahoma(formerly SoCalif) Originally Mich,
13,387 posts, read 16,962,646 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrokenTap View Post
Oh yeah they can easily overgraze because they eat so much closer to the ground, and because their little mouths are amazingly agile. They can literally sort oats from the chaff in their managers.

In 1947 "the year Maine burned", sheep were at the height of their popularity in Maine. When a severe draught came, the pastures the sheep resided in were left brown and tinder dry. Once the fires sprang up from trains, camp fires and thunder storms, a huge portion of coastal Maine burned.

With the right management though, this can be used to a farmers advantage. Goats browse on brush better then sheep, but sheep still browse. They also love weeds. Got some poison ivy you want to get rid of...get sheep. My sheep will mob graze a patch of poison ivy in a matter of hours. In a few grazing seasons they will rid a field of weeds and leave higher quality grass for cows and whatnot. No need for herbicide to get rid of dandelions and other weeds...sheep improve pastures for free.

I am clearing land right now and it is truly amazing the improvement a flock of sheep can make on a few acres of rough pasture in such a short time. Brush, weeds, and grass are mowed down as never before, and since they poo 85% of what they eat, I am fertilizing it as I go as well!

It can be a challenge to keep the sheep in tight pastures and really get the mob grazing I want, but hopefully I can get some help in this regard soon. As Marmac will tell you, rotational grazing is the key to keeping the sheep happy and the soil and forage in an improved state. But they don't call it MIG (Managed Intensive Grazing) for nothing. It takes time and management skill to pull it off. I won't lie to you, I am struggling with right now. It is not as easy to do as I thought it would be.

My paddocks were too small at first, and I am adding sheep way too fast. My fencing should be better but a need to increase fenced in acres is competing with higher quality fences that need to be installed in already fenced in acres. I'm making sheep management mistakes all over the place but give me 5 years and hopefully I will be doing a lot better.

Sheep are a challenge, but I still like them over cows I think.
That's very interesting.
As we all know, without mistakes, there would be no learning process and without a learning process, there would be mistakes. So when it comes to educating yourself, it's a catch 22..
Good Luck
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Old 06-23-2009, 05:47 PM
 
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I tried to do the right thing...I called the County Extension, had the livestock expert come out to do a grazing plan for me and everything.

He got out of the truck, asked a few questions and ascertained who I was and who my family was. He walked around a bit, said "cut my trees that are shading the grass and get some electronet and move it around", and then left.

Thanks for nothing cow bag I had that figured out already.

It goes back a ways, but as a rule I found County Extension people really love working with novice farmers, but when it comes to experienced farmers, they really feel threatened. He knew my family, had sparred on an issue, and had no interest in helping me. Guilt by association I guess.

So I forged ahead on my own. That's okay I screwed up. Paddocks too small, but I had based them on some tonnage rates per acre that were too high, and on sheep numbers that were low. When I increased my operation by 75%, my paddocks got really small, really fast. Now that I got some acreage fenced in, they are doing better. I got 2 fields that are "resting" right now, so I am in good shape.

Better still the NCRS guy will be coming out on Thursday to look into my rotational grazing issue and make some suggestions. I've worked with him a lot and he won't steer me wrong.

At the same time, I have the Regional Conservation Forester coming out the 30th to look over some forest ground that I may/may not turn into additional pasture. Its real iffy. The soil is not wet land soil, but it is highly erodible. I think with some wind and sun on it, it will dry out nicely and grow some serious crops. The NCRS is not so sure.

Forest wise I don't see anything of value coming up through...some Ash and Popil but who cares about that? The bigger spruce and Fir is over 90 years old and blowing over from the wind so it is in the midst of a change. Of course it is surrounded on 4 sides by rock walls so at one point a plow has turned the sod on this piece of land. It is only 6 acres, but located right next to my house. With the rest of the land I have already cleared, it would give me a 20 acre monolythic field so cutting the wood off and turning it back into field is very tempting.

Who said farming was easy huh?
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