Hay field

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by steff bugielski, May 8, 2005.

  1. steff bugielski

    steff bugielski Well-Known Member

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    One of my neighbors just offered us his 50 acre hay field to cut . He does not have the time to do it any longer. We do not have any equiptment but another friend does. Any idea how mwny square bales 50 acres will produce? It seems like a great way to get free hay and some left over to sell.
    Steff
     
  2. moopups

    moopups In Remembrance

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    What type grass? How tall? How dense?
     

  3. mtman

    mtman Well-Known Member

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    about 70 per acre
     
  4. fordson major

    fordson major construction and Garden b Supporter

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    could be any where between 1000 to 5000 depending on varity moisture,fertility and stage of growth or it could rain steady on downed hay and it not be worth baling.as to it being free gas,diesel ,twine and repairs add up not to mention labour!!still every year for the last 33 we have made varying amounts of hay and does not deter us!
     
  5. steff bugielski

    steff bugielski Well-Known Member

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    Well I understand it will cost , but we would have to pay 2.25 a bale for middle of the road hay. We use about 1000 bales a year. I thought if my friend with the equiptment would help us he could keep what we don't use. If we don't get more than we need I will need to pay him. I still think it would cost less than the price of hay around here.
    steff
     
  6. rambler

    rambler Well-Known Member Supporter

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    :) That can be a dangerous assumption. :)

    Making hay requires perfect timing. One needs to beat the weather, and getting the hay exactly dry enough. Alfalfa esp, bale it 2 hours early & it is too wet & spoils; bale it 2 hours late & the leaves are too dry & you leave all the protien in the field, only bale stems....

    50 acres is quite a bit. Is this grass hay, and do you get 1, 2, or 3 cuttings a year from it? Typically grass hay will give you a heavy 1st cutting, and 1/2 - 3/4 as many bales in a second cutting.

    Your issue will be timing. If all of you have real jobs, a bad week of rain can totally ruin your harvest. Be prepared for that reality.

    Otherwise, many people just like to make their own hay. I can understand that. :) You likely won't save anything, but you will enjoy....

    Now, 50 acres of good hay is a lot - I get 50-80 bales an acre the first cutting, and 25-60 bales per acre the second cutting. Are you & your neighbor prepared to handle & store 3500 - 7000 bales in a summer?

    It typically costs 50% of the crop in fuel, twine, & repairs. Add to that the labor & risk of a failed (rain/ drought) crop. Just for some thought.

    --->Paul