Pasturing Young Grain

Would it be advisable to herd milch cows for a few hours each day on a

field of black oats which is to be grown for hay? The oats are now about

four inches high and rank, as the land was pastured last year. The land

is sandy, rolling soil and will soon be dry enough so that the cows

would not injure the plants. The idea is that the leaves which are green

now will all dry up and are really not the growth which is cut for hay;

therefore, I should think it would do no harm to feed it down a bit.

Over-rank grain with abundant moisture will make a more stocky growth

and stand against lodging if pastured or mowed. The leaves which you

speak of as being lost in the later growth of the plant serve an

important purpose in making that growth, and removing them is a

repressive process which is not desirable when rain is short. We should

allow the plants to push along into as good a growth of hay as a dry

year's moisture will give.

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