If you were to come by the farm while I am doing chores this week it would look like a yard sale. Each morning I gear up in my usual winter chore attire and each morning, during the walk out the pastures, I begin to shed layers. This weather, although comfortable, does have some drawbacks. Increased pressure on sensitive pastures and the possibly of getting equipment stuck is a real hazard this week. This is why I would urge caution in undertaking any major projects that involve heavy machinery. Even though I am a big proponent of regeneration through disturbance, the footprint and damage created by heavy tractor or truck work on a pasture will ultimately set the grass back.
This warm weather may also get some of you thinking about frost seeding to improve your sward but in speaking with the experts here at the extension office they have advised holding off until March when a more predictable freeze/ thaw cycle will occur. Spreading the seeds too early in this type of weather could cause a decrease in the germination rates of some seeds. That being said, there are still plenty of other ways to take advantage of this early spring weather. Check the fence lines on foot, clean out the hard pack in the chicken coop while it’s thawed, sit out on the back porch and revise this years business plan, or if you are truly motivated, get started on those tax returns. Either way, this unpredictability is what makes livestock production so interesting.