By Ken M. Nelson
McCone County Extension Agent 

Notes From Nelson

Avoiding Nitrate Problems


Just because we have received some recent rains, don't rule out the possibility of elevated nitrate levels in forage plants. Forages often accumulate nitrates when environmentally stressed, with buildup also influenced by soil conditions and plant vigor. While commonly seen in such feeds as oats, barley, and corn as forages, other forages such as wheat, sudangrass, sorghum-sudan hybrids, turnips, and pearl millet can also accumulate excessive nitrates.

If producers are considering utilizing some of these crops as livestock forage, they should have the feed tested prior to cutting to help...

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