By: Jerry Lindquist, Michigan State University Extension
The 2014 Great Lakes Forage and Grazing Conference will be held during Agriculture and Natural Resources Week at the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center on the Michigan State University Campus on March 6, 2014. This event sponsored by the Michigan Forage Council with support from Michigan State University Extension will feature the latest information and research on forage production, marketing and grazing.
The featured speaker at this year’s conference is Gabe Brown of Bismarck, North Dakota. Gabe is a farming pioneer utilizing multi-specie cover crop mixes in crop rotations to dramatically improve soil health and soil quality. He does this by integrating no till cropping and grazing livestock to make for a holistic system requiring fewer herbicide and fertilizer inputs on his family’s 5,400 acre cash crop and livestock ranch. Gabe will speak twice during the day, first on "Holistically Regenerating our Lands" and in the afternoon on "Blending No till, Cover Crops and the Grazing Animal to Lower Production Cost and Improve the Environment".
Christy Sprague, MSU weed specialist will also talk about "Palmer Amaranth – A New Weed Threat for Michigan Alfalfa Fields". Rounding out the morning will be a session by DuPont Pioneer addressing advancements in alfalfa and corn breeding.
The afternoon break-out sessions will feature:
- Alternative Forage Crops for Harvested Feed
- MSU Forage Research Update
- Organic Fly Control for Grazing Animals
- Using Sudex and Brassica Mixes for Grazing Sheep
- Farmer panel discussion on Baleage – Making Round Bales the Fermented Way
- Panel discussion on Three Styles of Successful Beef Cattle Grazing in Michigan
- Michigan Hay Market Update
This conference is intended for all agricultural producers who produce forage based hays, silages and pasture crops, including the consultants who advise them. The registration fee is $50 per person if received by Feb. 28. Members of the Michigan Forage Council receive a reduced rate of $40 per person. All early registrants are guaranteed a lunch. Late registrations after Feb. 28 must add $5 per person to the fee. Registration information is available at www.michiganforagecouncil.org or at the Osceola County MSU Extension Office at 231-832-6139.