Drought experienced through much of Wisconsin during the summer has reduced the states dry alfalfa inventory by 32% and other dry forage by 1% as of the 2012 USDA October Crop Production summary. Forage shortages are of great concern to livestock producers. The high cost of many forms of feed caused unexpected financial challenges for livestock producers. New forage production strategies will help rebuild the low forage inventories across the state.
One such strategy is the potential to raise double crop forages after winter wheat harvest. Farms scattered across Wisconsin tried growing emergency forages and double crop soybeans after winter wheat during the 2012 drought with mixed results. Rather than growing emergency forages during the wheat fallow gap in the growing season, planned double crop forage can increase the likelihood of success.