Alfalfa Hay And Soil Fertility

We are feeding all our hay to dairy cows, returning the manure to the

soil. At present prices of hay, my neighbors who sell theirs, seem to be

as well off, with considerable less work; but how about the future? Can

this soil be cropped indefinitely and the crops sold, without returning

anything to the land?

It is a mistake to think that you can sell alfalfa hay indefinitely

without reducing the soil. It may gain in nitrogen by the wastes of the

plant, but it will lose in other constituents unless reinforced by

fertilization. No single act can make for the maintenance of the soil as

the growing and feeding of crops and return of manure does.

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