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Falcata - Yellow Alfalfa

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Cowpuncher

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Last year on Ranchers.net there was discussion of falcata or yellow alfalfa. I have seen some of this growing in our area in limited quantities. but now we would like to consider planting a half section or full section opf the stuff to see how cattle do on it.

We have been unable to locate a source of seed at a reasonable price, although an interenet search turns up a lot of information.

Does anyone know of a reasonably priced source of seed. We are looking for 1000# to 2000#.

Thanks

Cowpuncher
 

alabama

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2000 pounds to plant a section or a sq mile. That seed must go a long way. Even at 20 pounds to the acre 2000 pounds will only plant 100 acres. I thught a section was 640 acres or one squere mile.
By the way Mike; How is your alfalfa patch doing?
 
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Alabama said:
2000 pounds to plant a section or a sq mile. That seed must go a long way. Even at 20 pounds to the acre 2000 pounds will only plant 100 acres. I thught a section was 640 acres or one squere mile.
By the way Mike; How is your alfalfa patch doing?

Alabama- I would guess that cowpunchers seeding rate is a lot less than yours-- I know ours is--In this heavy gumbo soil I never put the irrigated alfalfa in any heavier than 12-15 lbs per acre--About 8 on the dryland-- Lower both down if I'm mixing with grass seed...

I was thinking of trying some of this falcata in some land I'd like to put back into pasture-- but with a grass seed mixture, I would probably not seed any heavier than 3- 4 lbs an acre--but cowpuncher I haven't found any of it reasonable priced either.....Let me know if you find a source....
 

Mike

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Alabama said:
2000 pounds to plant a section or a sq mile. That seed must go a long way. Even at 20 pounds to the acre 2000 pounds will only plant 100 acres. I thught a section was 640 acres or one squere mile.
By the way Mike; How is your alfalfa patch doing?

I think those guys want to have some grass mixed in to dilute the bloat potential.

I plowed mine up and planted a garden in it. I was just trying to see if it could be done here. I am going to plant about 40 acres of "Tyrone" soybeans when I get my ryegrass hay off. Dr. Ball said I could get 4-5 tons per acre. We'll see. Might start cutting next week.
 

alabama

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I wish I could get alfalfa going on my place. But around here the stand only last for a year or 2 if you are lucky. And the soil PH is hard to keep above 6 without lots of lime.
Just a thought, but with soy bean rust in clover I was just wondering if it will get in alfalfa? Everyone I have talked with down here is not planting any soy beans this year. All I here is corn and cotton with peanuts down south. If it dryes out enough to plant.
 

alabama

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Tyrone beans? hummm what is that? are you going to combine em or cut for hay.
I plan to start cutting as soon as this next rain is out at the end of the week. That is if they forcast several days of dry weather. I got lots of clover that is just now setting seed. It should be just right next week with a little rye grass in it.
 

Cowpuncher

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One man who sells falcata seed (for $30.00 a pound) says that one need only plant 1/3 of a pound per acre. We were planning on 2 or 3 pounds.

When we plant dry land alfalfa, we use about 6 pounds per acre, on irrigated about 20#.

Maybe if this stuff is as good at they say, I would be able to find it easily.
 

Faster horses

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Lucky for you, I cleaned my office yesterday and found the information I had saved on falcata.

I don't know the price, but it is grown by Bud Smith, Lodgepole, SD, 605-564-2181, or contact Jerry Schuman, Agronomist at at Cheyenne, Wy. 307-772-2443, ext. 107.

The information I have came from March 2003 issue of BEEF.

Hope this helps!!!
 

Jinglebob

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Is this the old original alfalfa that came over from Russia?

We have some in our southern pastures. It doesn't form a curl on the seed pod, but more like a bean. Plant is about half the size of regular alfalfa and the leaves are half size too.

I fenced off some land years ago for a place to keep my bulls out of the cows in the spring and that was the first I noticed that we had it. It grows around a dam that was the most overgrazed, hard used chunk of ground on the place, in them days. It's spreading all over my pasture and cattle can't seem to kill it here. I think it is great for the nitrogen it puts in the ground.

I was told by a neighbor who went on a tour up in the Lodgepole area, where there is a man who grows it and sells the seed, that you should plant no more than a pound to the acre and watch it spread over the years. I don't think it would put out a lot for hay production, but maybe it's kind'a like the small cow argument, it lasts a lot longer so you don't need to get quite as many pounds a year! :lol:
 

rancher

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Mike said:
Alabama said:
2000 pounds to plant a section or a sq mile. That seed must go a long way. Even at 20 pounds to the acre 2000 pounds will only plant 100 acres. I thught a section was 640 acres or one squere mile.
By the way Mike; How is your alfalfa patch doing?

I think those guys want to have some grass mixed in to dilute the bloat potential.

I plowed mine up and planted a garden in it. I was just trying to see if it could be done here. I am going to plant about 40 acres of "Tyrone" soybeans when I get my ryegrass hay off. Dr. Ball said I could get 4-5 tons per acre. We'll see. Might start cutting next week.

It doesn't bloat cattle. That is the nice part of it, doesn't winter kill either.
 

Liberty Belle

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Jinglebob,
This is the original alfalfa from Russia all right, and the guy from Lodgepole is Bud Smith, the same guy that Faster Horses posted a telephone number for. My Dad’s cow camp is just a couple miles down the road from Bud. I don’t know much about the alfalfa, but the neighbor’s claim it’s the real deal.
 

EJ

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Bud Smith was featured in the S Dak extension quarterly magazine about 3 yrs ago. The yellow blossom origniated from Cossack "Russia" . Arvid Boe, is an SDSU plant scientist and has done a lot at expanding this strain. We have small patches of it and it does spread on it`s own. I never seed over 8 lbs to the acre. Some stands with grass in them still have 40% alfalfa and maybe 30-40yrs old. Sure beats digging in the dirt.
 

EJ

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The 8 lbs I was talking about is normal hay type alfalfa. Another plus with the falcata is that it is rizhomonous.
 

Kate/wy

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I've heard that one can seed that alfalfa by mixing it with say mineral and it is spread by cattle as they travel around, thru their manure. Anyone use this method?
 

Silver

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One of the ranchers in the area does that, he claims it works well for getting it spread around his bush pasture. Was thinking about trying it myself.
 

Cowpuncher

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Rancher,

I called Bud Smith and he has no seed due to drought. Also tried to call Jerry Shuman at Cheyenne (His number is 307-772-2433- not 2443.

Last year you posted the following:

I know of a guy that sells it for under $2 a pound the last I heard, it has grown on his place since the early 1930's and has never been replanted. It makes nice hay and can graze it with no bloat problems.

I have been totally unsuccessful trying to find seed. Soes this friend of yours have any or can he get some?

Thanks

Cowpuncher
 

EJ

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Kate/wy said:
I've heard that one can seed that alfalfa by mixing it with say mineral and it is spread by cattle as they travel around, thru their manure. Anyone use this method?

Yes, I`ve done it and it works a bit. But you do have a lot of plant growing in a small "cow pie" area. Their also seems to be a large alalfa plant population in cow trails close to water. You so need moisture for it to continue growing though. I had mixed 5 lbs of alfalfa with 10 lbs of yeast and 100lbs of mineral. End result it isn`t going to work all the time.
 

Kate/wy

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could one get it started by dropping the seed from an airplane, or does it need to be covered? Thanks for your experience.
 
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Kate/wy said:
could one get it started by dropping the seed from an airplane, or does it need to be covered? Thanks for your experience.

Kate/wy-- It should work if you do it the right time-- We've seeded fields and pasture by broadcast only-- but it works best if you do it in the fall after the ground has frozen ( so it doesn't start growing then), and let the winter snow take it into the ground.......Also seeded alfalfa and grass in the spring by broadcast and let the rain take it in--but have not got as good of stands unless you can harrow it so half doesn't blow away in the spring winds we have.....
 

Cowpuncher

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First, there is no seed available (commercially) in the US right now. but

this plant has the attention of a lot of people and it is going into commercial production. Unfortunately, the government has been trying to rejuvenate Sage Grouse habitat with this seed so it is going to be scarce.

Anyway, the seed is commercially availabe from:

Wind River Seed Company
Worland. Wyoming
307-568-3361
Talk to Rick Dunne

Their supply for this year is all gone, but they expect to harvest about 20,000# this fall. I got on the waiting list for mine. The price for next year is not yet determined, but they grow two grades.

#1 is 90% Falcata sells for $6.50 /#
#2 is 80% Falcata sells for $5.50 /#

The price for next fall is not yet determined but will likely be somewhere in that area.

You may order this seed now if you like. I told Rick Dunne that I would post his source.

Thanks to those of you that helped my locate this seed source. I was going to go to the Russian today if I didn't find a supplier. That would have been fun.

Cowpuncher
 

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