Established alfalfa will recover from the effects of a light frost (upper 20s for several hours). Moderate freezing damage will harm the top of the stem and terminal buds but will not necessitate any treatment. Regrowth must occur from the stem's lower axillary buds or from new crown buds. New growth will emerge green and healthy-looking.
Alfalfa is a hardy perennial that can be grown as an annual if planted in soil that has been enriched with organic matter such as compost or manure. It will survive in half-shaded areas of the yard if water is available during dry periods. However, it does best when exposed to full sun. Alfalfa likes well-drained soil that is rich in nitrogen; add some organic fertilizer to increase the plant's nutrition. Water regularly during drought conditions to ensure survival.
Alfalfa stems are used for animal feed and for production of oil and hay. The plant also has medicinal uses. The young shoots and leaves are edible and contain nutrients needed by humans and animals. The flowers produce a milky juice that is used to make cheese and other products.
Alfalfa was originally cultivated by Native Americans as a food source and for its medicinal properties. They grew it primarily in northern states where it survives through cold winters.
A death freeze occurs when temperatures drop low enough to destroy all of the top growth on an alfalfa plant. The plant wilts, becomes tan, and loses its leaves. It will not recover even when spring temperatures rise again. The entire crop must be harvested or destroyed to prevent further damage. A killing frost is similar except that it also kills the pollen grains that would fertilize the next generation of plants. Pollination is important because most alfalfa plants only produce flowers with green pods that don't contain seeds.
Alfalfa is grown for its nutritious seed pods. The best way to harvest alfalfa is to cut it just above the ground after the flower heads have turned brown. Let any remaining yellow stamens fall into your handkerchief or other container before you move it from one place to another. If you wait until late in the season to cut the alfalfa, the plants will have grown too tall for easy cutting. The high-growing stems can wrap themselves around trees or power lines and cause accidents if not removed.
The survival of your alfalfa plant depends on where it is located. Alfalfa grows well in rich soil with plenty of nitrogen gas (nitrogen is used by plants to make proteins). It needs full sun and average rainfall.
Late Alfalfa Cuttings: Around northern areas, particularly in mid-October, alfalfa should not be cut or grazed for 4 to 6 weeks before the first lethal frost, or between the first week of September and mid-October. During this period, the plants will store nitrogen in their roots which will be available for use when they're burned after winter as a soil amendment.
Alfalfa should be cut when dry but not wilted. If it's still wet, it will rot if left exposed to the weather.
If you wait until alfalfa is completely dry, that is when you should cut it. Water will evaporate from alfalfa's leaves faster than from grasses', so it will eventually need to be cut anyway. However, cutting it while it's still moist allows some insects access to the plant which would otherwise be trapped beneath its blanket of greenness.
Alfalfa is an important part of livestock nutrition, so it makes sense to let it grow until after harvest to provide plenty of food for next year's crop.
Temperatures below 26 degrees Fahrenheit cause severe frost. Temperatures in the low twenties (20 degF to 25 degF) over a lengthy period of time may damage established alfalfa or red clover. Consider interseeding forage grasses or rotating to another crop in that field if there are fewer than five live plants per square foot after a freeze.
Alfalfa and red clover are both grown as forages for livestock feed. Although they have similar growth cycles, alfalfa grows faster than red clover. Thus, if you want to keep the cost of your operation low, grow only one of these crops at a time. Otherwise, you'll need to spend money on fertilizers and herbicides to maintain your fields.
Alfalfa is an annual plant that grows from seed and produces green leaves and flower buds all year long. It can be harvested continuously until fall arrives, when the leaves die back and turn brown. The next year's seedlings will then grow up around the roots of the previous season's alfalfa, providing continuous coverage for grazing animals.
Red clover is a perennial plant that grows throughout most of North America in well-drained soil with some clay content. Like other members of the legume family, it has pods with small, white flowers that produce seeds when pollinated by wind-blown pollen from other red clover plants.
The cold conditions will undoubtedly harm the tree's blossoms, and any fruit production for this year will be lost. Because the tree is no longer dormant, temperatures that are too low may cause harm to the leaf buds and branches. If the temperature drops below 20 degrees F, some damage may occur to the tree.
Plums like a warm climate and can only produce flowers and fruit in certain climates. They do best when it is hot and dry during the summer and cold but not freezing during the winter. Too much rain or snow can also hurt the tree by causing it to produce fruit that is not ready for harvesting yet.
Frost can also damage trees by breaking off their leaves or killing them entirely. Without these photosynthesizing leaves, the tree cannot grow healthy roots that will help it survive future winters. Even if the plum doesn't die completely, its growth will be limited without normal winter weather. It is important to understand the needs of each plant species so that you provide proper care and protection from harsh conditions.
Seeding-year alfalfa can be harvested as soon as 40 days after seedlings appear. It takes roughly 40 days for plants to recover from the crown after being clipped. If you want to prolong the flowering period, you can let half of the plant go to seed each year.
Alfalfa is an annual that should be cut back every year. The growth will return if given enough time and water, but it's not advisable to leave any part of the plant standing in the field because this will cause the stem to produce side shoots which will flower and set seeds too. This makes seeding-year alfalfa important because it allows farmers to get rid of old plants while still getting a crop the next season.
There are two types of seeding-year alfalfa: green and purple. Green seeding-year alfalfa looks like regular alfalfa except that it has yellow flowers instead of red. It goes to seed the same way, producing a second crop the following year. Purple seeding-year alfalfa has dark purple flowers that don't open until nearly a month after pollination. This gives the plant time to grow more pods which contain more seeds than normal alfalfa.