AG NEWS
AG NEWS

HarvXtra® Alfalfa from a Farmer’s Perspective

  • Dec 02, 2016
alfalfa plant
Genetically engineered reduced-lignin alfalfa available through HarvXtra® is giving farmers more flexibility in cutting management than ever before. With this technology, you have options:
  • Delay harvest to maximize yield potential while maintaining good forage digestibility or
  • Harvest for superior forage digestibility
The technology has been extensively tested, and here’s a look at one farmer’s experience with initial field trials.

Kevin Ihm, who manages a dairy operation in southern Wisconsin, was cutting every 28 days with conventional alfalfa and sometimes getting a relative forage quality (RFQ) of only 130 to 150, which was significantly below what he expected.
 
This past spring, Ihm integrated 260 acres of HarvXtra® alfalfa with Roundup Ready® Technology into his operation, took a first cutting, then harvested twice more at 28-day intervals. Multiple samples from all three cutting dates revealed an average RFQ of 196. Next year, Ihm plans to move to a 35-day cut with a goal of achieving an RFQ of 160 to 170.
 
Ihm says his HarvXtra® alfalfa plants look leafier in the field and smell fresher than some of his conventional alfalfa plants. “Our test results have been good; but the cows will let us know their opinion,” he notes. Ihm is currently conducting a 12-week feeding trial to find out.
 
Contact your WinField® United retailer for more information about implementing new alfalfa technologies in 2017.