The following Agriculture & Natural Resources articles originally printed in the 2018 Summer edition of the Oldham County Extension Newsletter.
Cost-Share Applications Anticipated in June
We anticipate having applications available in June for two cost-share programs. Please follow up with our office in early June for application and deadline information These cost-share programs are offered through the Kentucky Agricultural Development Fund in partnership with the Oldham County Agriculture Development Council and Oldham County Farm Bureau.
The first cost-share program is the County Agricultural Investment Program. This cost-share offers 11 investment areas that give Kentucky ag producers the ability to increase net farm income, add value to their products, and diversify their operations. This cost-share has a maximum of $1,500 per approved applicant. New this year: some of the investment areas have specific educational requirements in the form of video training. A schedule of these and other educational opportunities will be mailed to those approved for CAIP cost-share.
The second cost-share program is the Youth Ag Incentives Program. This cost-share program was developed to benefit youth actively engaged in agriculture and focuses on youth developing agriculture projects. Applicants are required to be enrolled in elementary, middle, or high school, and may also include home school students. Applicants must be at least 9 years of age as of January 1, 2018. Award amount is based on number of applicants, not to exceed $1,500 per applicant.
As a reminder – cash receipts are not eligible for reimbursement in these cost-share programs. CAIP applicants must have a farm serial number to complete an application. If you are unsure of this number, please contact the Farm Service Agency at (502) 845-2820 for more information.
Read more about cost-share guidelines online. Please call our office or email firstname.lastname@example.org with questions about projects that qualify.
Appointments are available with our program administrator for help completing cost-share applications from 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. on the following dates: June 6, June 13, and June 20. Please call (502) 222-9453 to schedule an appointment.
Producer Spotlight – Managing Small Acreage Horse Pasture
One of the joys of being an agent is seeing people be successful. A few years ago, I met Shannon and Greg Ash. I’d gone over to their place to look at their pastures and help with some questions. Since then, I’ve tested their soil and given advice for timely seeding and weed control for their pastures. Although Shannon and Greg have limited acreage for their horses, they have learned to manage it well.
A must-have piece of equipment for horse owners is a chain harrow or some other light cultivation implement, especially for those without access to a no-till seeder. A chain harrow allows roughing of the soil in order to get good seed to soil contact that is needed for germination. Chain harrows come in different sizes, including types that can be pulled with ATV’s and UTV’s. Chain harrows can be used to rough the soil (points side down) then flipped to settle seeds into the soil after sowing.
Establishing or reseeding pastures involves several steps, and it’s important to follow through with soil testing, fertilizing, controlling weeds, and managing horses to prevent overgrazing. After testing soil, Shannon and Greg applied fertilizer and lime recommended by the soil test. They followed up with timely herbicide applications to keep problem weeds under control. They also reseeded thinning pastures to provide adequate grazing, keep weeds from coming back, and to prevent erosion. This spring, they shared their latest success:
“We leveled soil in this pasture, then harrowed it both ways (crisscross) to create a good seedbed. In late February, we used a broadcast seeder to spread a mix of perennial ryegrass and clover. We’d planned to run the harrow back over the pasture to get better seed to soil contact, but it started snowing while we were seeding. There were a couple of snows after we seeded. After the new seedlings got about 2 inches high, we went in and hand-raked a few bare spots and reseeded those. The pasture is growing well this spring. We’ve already mowed it to a 5-inch height once. And it’s ready to be mowed again.”
Even though the weather kept them from doing everything exactly as planned, they were still successful. The Ashes plan to keep horses off the pasture for a while to allow good root establishment so horses can’t pull the new grass out of the ground. This is another key to good pasture establishment. Thanks, Shannon and Greg, for sharing your success!
For more information on managing pastures, contact email@example.com or visit forages.ca.uky.edu.
Written by Traci Missun, Oldham County Agriculture & Natural Resources Agent, and Lauren Fernandez,Oldham County Extension Staff Assistant.