There is an old saying ‘make hay while the sun shines’. It might be old but it is as true for farmers today as it was 200 years ago. Custom also plays a part, in most years people cut after the Sale Show which is on the first weekend in November. Now of course we have the advantage of weather forecasts from the Bureau of Metrology. We had noticed earlier in the month that some of the grass was starting to set seed and so the palatability of any of the hay cut from the pasture would start to decline the longer we left it. The other issue was the clover. This year we have had a bumper crop but unfortunately is a delicate plant and tends to wilt as the weather warms up.
Clover in September
Looking at the forecast on Tuesday; Wednesday was predicted to be 28°C followed by 5 or so dry days. This led us to organise a contractor to cut and bale the first 3 paddocks on the property. The contractor was recommended by friends of ours and he was able to answer the call. He came out to inspect the paddocks and agreed that if the weather held up it would be a good chance to get the hay cut. Cutting took most of the Wednesday, which got up to 30°C. The remaining clover in the uncut paddocks took a flogging from the heat so we were pleased to get it cut when we did.
Then the wait began, we anxiously checked the weather and curing of the cut hay daily. Brilliantly the weather held up and our contractor raked and baled it all on Sunday. It was a little touch and go with the last paddock as to whether it would be completed on the day – but our contractor pushed through, aware of the approach of some bad weather.
This was just as well as Monday the heavens opened and dumped about 16mm of rain.
A welcome sight Monday morning was this:
A total of 136 5′ rolls of pasture hay.
There was also one mini roll. Which Deva rather likes to stand on.