106237 Optimal Harvest Stage for Spring-Grown Oat Forage.
Poster Number 504
Forage-type oat is grown on over 0.7 million ha in the USA and can successfully be integrated in dairy rations while diversifying crop rotations. However, and despite the growing interest for this small-grain forage, the optimal harvest timing to maximize milk production remains unknown. In order to answer this question, two forage-type cultivars, ForagePlus and Laker, were planted in a randomly complete block design with 3 replications at the Arlington and Madison agricultural research stations (WI) in 2016. Plots were harvested at four harvest timings: a) booting, b) 2 days after booting, c) heading and d) 3-5 days after heading. Biomass yields were recorded and forage-samples were analyzed for crude protein, acid & neutral detergent fiber content. Their relative forage quality (RFQ) and potential milk production were estimated as well. Milk production was maximized at the later heading stage, where high biomass yield compensated for the reduction in quality. No differences were found between ForagePlus and Laker in milk production per hectare and RFQ at this late stage, but differences were observed at earlier stages.[R1] We concluded that ForagePlus and Laker are similar varieties that should be harvested after heading for maximal milk production.
[R1]You cannot give two different values for milk production or RFQ if you did not find differences. You should report the average value for each variable if there are no differences.