Pasture Update from Phil in the Fields

Organic Amish farm in Kalona

Today is the summer solstice, heralding the start of summer. While the temperature in Iowa gets hotter, the days get shorter. Our farms typically experience what we like to call the “summer slump.” This is when the pasture begins to grow more slowly and the cows give less milk.

During the summer, the cows on our organic dairy farms spend most of their daytime in loafing areas and graze at night. The hot temperatures, coupled with the usual humidity, keep the cows looking for shade. Usually, if our farms get an adequate amount of rain and rest for pasture, the pastures will fill with clover, brome and orchard grass. Many forward-looking dairymen will graze sorghum sudan grass, a fast-growing heat-loving annual that provides good grazing during the heat of the summer. 
Well, that’s all for this update from Phil in the Fields! Learn more!