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 Post subject: Pasture Grass
PostPosted: Sun Jun 05, 2005 10:53 am 
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Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 6:00 pm
Posts: 219
Location: Hubbard,TEXAS
I didn't plant it, but I'm seeing--what I think is--bahia grass. Being south of Dallas, it looks as if we're on the very edge of where this grass grows.
If it's bahia, I have mixed emotions. Sounds like it's good cattle pasture, but my concern is that it might crowd-out my bermuda. If so, is this good, bad or otherwise? Looks like the bahia seed would cost about $50/acre to plant.

Pat Akin


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 06, 2005 12:11 am 
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Location: San Antonio,TEXAS
Are your cattle eating it? I would think any mix would be better than a monoculture of one kind of grass.

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 Post subject: Bahia grass
PostPosted: Mon Jun 06, 2005 6:44 am 
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Location: Hubbard,TEXAS
It looks as if they are eating it. Yes, a mix is better than monoculture, but I'm wondering if it'll take over and become a monoculture itself...I'm sure, if it does, it'll take years.

My home is near a "creek" that catches runoff from most of the pasture, and there's a pretty good stand of bahia in the yard. I don't know if there's anything I could/would do about the bahia, but I'm curious if it'll eventually take over.

I appreciate your knowledge and help.

Pat Akin


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2005 1:01 pm 
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Location: San Antonio,TEXAS
What the intense rotators tell me is if you're grazing your animals in and out of the pasture and giving the grass 15-30 weeks to regrow, you'll end up with a mix of natives and survivors.

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 Post subject: pasture grass
PostPosted: Sun Jun 19, 2005 4:25 am 
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Joined: Sat Apr 12, 2003 12:45 am
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Location: Whitesboro,TX
Bahia is all over - from very south Florida to God
only know how far north - but well above north TX.
Most of use can not do MIG - management intensive
grazing - we don't have enough land - unless you
were born into it, why was dad so poor and left all
the land buying up to me and my wife?
Bahia and bemuda are not bad - my feeling is if it is
all green and they are not weeds, then I am in hog
heaven ( I really don't mean real hogs)
Bahia grows well and is very drought tolerant and the
last grass to turn brown in the fall just before the
first frost. Is this Bad? Try to graze it short before
the seed heads come up.
Robert D Bard


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 19, 2005 9:59 am 
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Location: McKinney,TEXAS
Bahia grass is most widely used south of the Red River and east of I-35. It is best suited to well-drained clay soils and loams. It can subsist on very little fertility which makes it more attractive than fertilizing bermuda.
I don't know if prussic acid is a problem with Bahia as it is with the Sorgums and Sudan grasses. Prussic acid builds up under stressed conditions and can kill cattle that graze it.
Tony M


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 Post subject: pasture grass
PostPosted: Sun Jun 19, 2005 10:49 am 
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Location: Whitesboro,TX
Bahia is a grass and not in the family of Johnson
grass, sorgum, etc. If it is fertilized with organic
products it is excellant forage and hay - but cut
before the seed heads get big as the nutriant
levels in the blades goes into the seeds.
Robert D Bard


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 02, 2005 2:06 pm 
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Joined: Tue Sep 27, 2005 8:37 am
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Location: Scurry,TEXAS
We have horses and they won't eat it. It is starting to take over and it is hard to mow. It is so tough it just kind of lays down, you pass over it and it pops back up. Plus it grows back to seed heads so fast it is hard to keep up with mowing it down.

Any suggestions?


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 11, 2005 4:00 pm 
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Location: Hawkins,TEXAS
Bahia will take over a pasture in a year or two if it is not controlled. It is great hay and forage for cows, but horses dont usually like it because it is tougher and the tall seed heads tickle their ears and eyes. They also dont like the hay because it is tougher.

We have had luck using a vinegar/orange oil mix on our 60 acre hay pasture. We spot spray about 5 days after we cut for hay. (Before the grass seeds out..... if you wait till after it seeds out you wont kill it because the plant slows down on the foliar uptake and get most of the nutrients from the roots.) It does kill the Bahia and young weeds very well and if it gets on the Coastal it only turns it yellow for a few days and then the Coastal comes back as strong as ever.
You can find our Vinegar/Orange Oil mix for sale on our Web Site www.WatsonRanchOrganic.com
Good luck,
Brad Watson
903 858-2030


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 28, 2005 11:16 pm 
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Location: Bokchito,OKLAHOMA
I am a big fan of Bahia grass. It was present on one little hiltop when I bought this farm. I was able to get it to spread over a brushy and weedy area by letting it seed out and then turning the cows in on it. I don't fertilize this area and it still does real well. However. it doesn't seem to bother the Bermuda.Yes. Bahia is harder to cut but I have a neighbor who bales Bahia and I buy several hundred of these bales every year for my dairy cattle. All ages of cattle love the hay. My milk cows are on free choice alfalfa but still like a bale of Bahia every day. The best thing about bahia is that it can seed out and cows will still graze it. Nutritional value is similar to Fescue but palatability much higher and it doesn't have the fungal problems of Fescue.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 11, 2005 10:10 am 
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Most of use can not do MIG - management intensive grazing - we don't have enough land

This is worthy of discussion. There's a guy in Fredricksburg having excellent commercial success using MIG with chickens on one acre. He has portable chicken coops with fences and "rotates" them 30 feet a day to new pasture.

At the risk of turning grazing into a mathematical equation, I think if your region (similar rainfall and soil area) can support, say, 100 cow/calf pairs (or 100,000 pounds) per year on 640 acres, then you should be able to scale that down to about 150 animal-pounds per acre. If you have one acre, that's one nanny/kid pair per acre, 18 chickens per acre, or 15 bunnies per acre. Fence your acre off in at least 15 pastures, run the program, and make adjustments based on performance of the animals AND pastures. Of course your forage has to support the feeding habits of the different animals, but that's the idea.

I've mentioned him before but up in Mason a guy started out with the stocking rate that all his neighbors used on 750 acres fenced into 50 acre paddocks. The difference was he fenced and rotated them every week or two depending on how fast the grass was growing. Every year he had more grass than last year so he added more cows. After a few years he has enough grass growing to double his stocking rate over his neighbors. Granted 750 acres is getting up there in pasture availability, but this guy has 3,000 conjoined acres available and still limited himself to the 750.

A guy down here locally heard this same guy talk in 2003 and decided to fence his pasture to try it. Already, after 29 months, he says he has tall grass where he never had grass before, lots of it, all year round. This is all done organically and without continual (or even annual) seeding. I wish I knew his acreage, but in his area (rife with urban encroachment) not many have large spreads.

But back to bahia, is there an animal that really prefers bahia? Or are you haying (not grazing) this property and more concerned with bale quality?

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 Post subject: animal preference
PostPosted: Fri Nov 11, 2005 1:14 pm 
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Location: Bokchito,OKLAHOMA
Yes. I believe grazing cattle will eat mature bahia (seed heads present) before they will eat mature bermuda grass. Compared to fescue, it's way more palatable. Fescue is the last thing in my pasture my cattle will eat. It doesn't matter how pretty and green it is. Bahia makes very soft hay even though it is hard to cut. My little dairy heifers cannot eat coarse hay but they love bahia. Also bahia will crowd out weeds when it becomes established. I guess it does compete with bemuda but I haven't seen it kill out bermuda where bermuda is growing. Bermuda is such a big nitrogen user that I think Bahia has a place on your marginal acres.

I enjoy this discussion. Since I am relatively new to this web site I would like to introduce myself. I grew up in Muenster, Texas and went to school with Ronnie Felderhoff- maker of Muenster Natural Animal Feed. Iv'e never tried the dog food but I can vouch for the integrety of Ronnie. He is a first class guy. I have fed plenty of their dairy feed. I graduated from Texas A+M with a dairy science degree. I now dairy farm in Bokchito, OK with my family. I enjoy farming and talking about farming and ranching so I will be checking in on this forum from time to time. :)


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 Post subject: Bahiagrass
PostPosted: Sat Nov 12, 2005 7:18 am 
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Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 6:00 pm
Posts: 219
Location: Hubbard,TEXAS
I walked over some pasture recently and found that the bahia grass had been eaten down to the ground, but the bermuda around it wasn't touched.

We've just cross-fenced our land and plan to do MIG soon. (It takes lots of dedication and work to move the cows as they should be.) This should keep the bermuda eaten also. Before the recent drought--Sept, Oct., Nov--our grass was so lush the cows just ate what they preferred.

Pat Akin


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