10 Things You Can Do This Winter

1. Brush Management using the cut stump treatment or stem spray method

2. Send off a fecal sample of your cattle herd to monitor diet quality.  You may need to adjust your supplemental feeding program! OR, if purchasing hay, conduct a forage analysis.

3. Measure your forage availability for livestock.  Both pre-winter and post-winter assessments of your forage can help you determine the number of livestock you can feed.  For example, checking your forage at the beginning of the winter will indicate the amount of grass you have for the winter and determine if adjustments in your stocking rate need to be made OR if you can expect to need hay.

4. Identify areas where you had weed issues this year and/or where there is bare ground and/or where you fed hay. Learn to identify the problem plant  in it’s early stages so that you can treat early in the season, when the control will be higher and require less chemical.

5. Evaluate your pastures you intend to prescribed burn.  Do you have enough fuel to create the kind of fire you want this year?

6. Maintain or install fire breaks for any prescribed burn you have planned for late winter.

7. Use this cooler time to mend or plan fencing to maximize rotational grazing opportunities in the spring.

8. Calibrate your spray equipment with this easy guide and be ready for next spring!

9. After 1st freeze (or drought conditions), be careful not to turn hungry cattle into pasture with johnsongrass (or other sorghums) due to the potential of toxicities to build up in the plant.

10. Watch a webinar from your own computer! The Texas Range Webinar Series has an hour long webinar every first Thursday at noon or you can watch them archived.  Watch for free or pay $10 to get a Pesticide Applicator CEU.

Thanks to Dr. Barron Rector, Range Specialist, Dr. Wayne Hanselka, Professor Emeritus, Dr. Joe Paschal, Livestock Specialist, and Dr. Alyson McDonald, Range Specialist, for their contributions to this post.

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