First cutting often is the most important cutting of the year. It usually produces the most yield and its forage quality changes fastest from day to day. Alfalfa started growing like gangbusters this spring, is knee high in many places, and could be ready to cut right now!

Many growers cut soon after first blooms appear. But weather can cause long delays and sometimes alfalfa doesn’t bloom very aggressively during spring. Plus, waiting until alfalfa begins to bloom often results in hay that is too low in quality for dairy use.

So what about cutting before plants bloom, or even before they form buds? Is this an alternative? And what are the risks?

To read the entire article, link here.