68 REPORT ON EXPERIMENT STATIONS, 1953
grass furnished an average of 2,029 grazing days per acre compared
with 1,895 days for the standard Huntley mixture.
The Nevada station (coop. USDA) produced meat-type hogs profitably
on a high roughage diet. Minnesota #1XDuroc pigs fed 10-,
30-, and 50-percent alfalfa rations reached 200 pounds at about 160,
170, and 190 days, respectively. Feed costs were reduced nearly 20
percent by using high amounts of alfalfa.
The superiority of grass-legume mixtures over straight grass seedings
for sheep pastures was demonstrated by grazing tests at the North
Dakota station. Alfalfa-bromegrass pasture seeded in 1951 provided
over 1,000 sheep-days of grazing per acre in 1952. Other grasses and
mixtures produced more forage but yielded fewer sheep-days of
The value of pasture in swine feeding is becoming more and more
apparent. The North Carolina station, in a preliminary test, found
that pigs self-fed corn on pasture needed only half as much corn per
100 pounds of gain as was required by pigs self-fed corn fortified with
minerals and vitamins in dry lot. Better pasture management methods
are needed to provide adequate swine pasture during unfavorable
Maximum results from the standpoint of economy of production and
animal health were obtained at the Pennsylvania station by allowing
pigs access to a forage crop. Legume pasture furnished at least 30
percent of the protein required by the growing pig.
Forage Crop Production and Management
Included in grassland farming research are studies of methods
whereby larger and more profitable forage crops and pastures can
be produced and grasslands management improved.
Preliminary reports from the Colorado station indicate that commercial
fertilizers added to the soil can produce additional feed on
seeded pastures which have begun to decline in production and that
in some cases fertilization may be economical on native ranges. The
station also demonstrated the feasability of improving high-altitude
irrigated meadows. Under the usual system of no soil treatment,
no water control, and late harvest, 400 pounds of crude protein per
acre were produced. When water was controlled and early and aftermath
harvests were made the protein production was 1,200 pounds per
acre. The addition of 160 pounds of nitrogen per acre, water control,
and early and aftermath harvest, also, yielded 1,200 pounds of crude
protein per acre but the protein was produced entirely from grasses
as the nitrogen eliminated the clover.
The Florida station, using radioactive calcium as a tracer, found
that under some conditions little or no downward movement of calcium
occurred in the phloem of grass roots. This suggests that, in order
to realize the maximum benefit of nutritional and water relationship
of crops, available calcium in amounts necessary to support healthy
root growth should be present throughout the entire soil volume within
which root growth is desired.
The Georgia station demonstrated that using heavier nitrogen levels
at seeding times stimulates early growth of forage crops but that later
topdressings are necessary for continued winter growth.
The use of herbicides for weed control in forage crops is steadily
U.S. Department of Agriculture. Agricultural Research Administration. Office of Experiment Stations. Report on the Agricultural Experiment Stations, 1953. Washington, D. C.. UNT Digital Library. http://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5989/. Accessed March 2, 2015.