February 5, 1999 | By: Ellen Brightwell

What are the secrets to getting a good stand of alfalfa?

"The secret is that there aren't really any secrets to establishing a good stand. It's all a matter of using practical, time-proven management practices. Of course, good luck always helps," said Jimmy Henning, Extension forage specialist at the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture.

Henning gave a glimpse into management practices that he will reveal on March 4 at the 19th annual Kentucky Alfalfa Conference at the Cave City Convention Center.

"The first step is to pick a good, well-drained site and address soil fertility needs at this site," he said. "Another step is to place the appropriate amount of seed at the correct depth. Be sure to pick a seeding window that will allow the plants to become established. Alfalfa producers can pick up details on more steps at our conference March 4 in Cave City."

During the conference, agricultural scientists will discuss alfalfa management practices and related research results. These educational sessions will include grasses that work best with alfalfa, what works and doesn't work when alfalfa follows alfalfa, results from four years of variety trials on grazing tolerance and tips for success when grazing alfalfa. In other sessions, an alfalfa producer and industry representative will discuss marketing hay.

Billy Ray Smith, Kentucky Commissioner of Agriculture, will give the keynote address on keys to success in marketing alfalfa hay.

In addition to the sessions, producers can visit more than 30 exhibits on university

educational programs, related commodity groups, and industries that serve Kentucky alfalfa producers, according to Garry Lacefield, Extension forage specialist.

The Cave City Convention Center is on Highway 70, one-half mile east of the Interstate 65 Cave City exit. Conference registration will begin at 8 a.m. Central Standard Time. The $15 fee will cover lunch, proceedings and other conference activities. Certified crop advisors can receive credit for four hours of continuing education units.

Kentucky county Extension offices have more information on the alfalfa conference.

Contact: 

Writer: Ellen Brightwell
(606) 257-1376

Sources: Jimmy Henning
(606) 257-3144

Garry Lacefield
(502) 365-7541, Ext. 202