University of Missouri Extension

M181, New February 2012

Dairy Grazing: Selecting the Right Forage

Corn (Zea mays L.)

Warm-season grasses

Although corn, or maize, has been grown in Missouri for more than 100 years, only recently has its value as a grazing crop been recognized. Under ideal conditions, corn can produce more feed per acre than just about any other crop. It maintains feed quality well after it reaches maturity. Corn in dairy systems is used in two ways: (1) grazed in midsummer as “green” corn, or (2) chopped for silage and fed as a supplement when pasture growth slows. Results from midsummer grazing trials suggest that dairy cows can produce 70 pounds of milk per day per cow on corn. The major obstacles to using corn for grazing are its susceptibility to drought and high input costs.

Kentucky bluegrassCorn

Yield distributionYield distribution of corn in Missouri.

Seed head
Seed head

Collar region
Collar region

M181 Dairy Grazing: Selecting the Right Forage | University of Missouri Extension

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