Field Crops & Forages

Some articles are in PDF format and require Adobe Acrobat Reader for viewing. Click here to download the reader. This page provides information on the production of grains such as corn, oats, soybeans, and wheat, as well as stored forages such as grass and legume hays and baleage. For additional information relating to grains and forages, see also:

To navigate within this page more quickly, click on the links below.GrainsForage CropsGeneral


Northeast Buckwheat Growers Association Newsletter

The Northeast Buckwheat Growers Association newsletter is published by Thomas Bjorkman each June and September. It is mailed to members and some additional members of the industry. There are some issues available on the web site. To join the Northeast Buckwheat Growers Association, please send an e-mail to with your name, address, phone number, and a few words about your experience with buckwheat production and what you would like to do in the future. The roster of members is shared only with other members. You will receive the newsletter and an annual membership list. There are no dues.

Organic Grain: Another Way

This educational package of 3 video tapes, 2 200-page books, and assorted reprints can serve as a framework for study and discussion groups evaluating alternative methods of grain production. Combines production information with examples from successful organic grain farmers. The 3 video tapes can be ordered separately.

  • Video #1 Farm Decision Making: Follow a farm family as they use holistic planning to explore new farm enterprises.
  • Video #2 Choosing Organic: Farmers from Maryland to New York explain why they chose organic production.
  • Video #3 The Transition to Organic: Farmers and researchers present production information on soil quality, wee, pest, and nutrient management; crop rotations; cover crops; and more.

The resource package includes:

  • Building Soils for Better Crops book
  • Managing Cover Crops Profitability book
  • Organic Trade Association (OTA) materials
  • Appropriate Technology Transfer for Rural Areas (ATTRA) factsheets
  • Brochure and order forms for Michigan State University field crop publications

Video 332OGVP (package), $52.50. Video 332VOGV (video tapes only), $31.50. To order, contact:

Cornell University Resource Center
Phone: (607) 255-2080

Sustainable Corn and Soybean Production

A descriptive approach to corn and soybean production, with useful references at the end of the publication.

Forage Crops

Cornell Forage-Livestock Systems Program

This site provides information on the history of dairy farming, species selection, forage requirements in New York State, grazing manuals, as well as links to other forage-related information.

For more information about the Forage-Livestock Systems Program, contact Dr. Jerry Cherney at  or (607) 255-0945.

Cornell Small Farms Program press releases

  • Baleage: An Opportunity for NY’s Small Farms

Large Round Bale Silage

Discusses the steps in making, storing, and feeding round baleage. Publication is in PDF format.

To obtain a hard copy, call (814) 865-6541.

Maintaining Quality in Large Bale Silage

Discusses the process of making large bales and how to maintain quality silage.

To obtain a copy, call 1-877-424-1300 or e-mail .

Trial Results Help Farmers Choose Forage 

The Northern NY Agriculture Development Program announces the availability of the 2009 forage yield trial results for 180 varieties of eight types of forage legumes or grasses.  These reports are helping NY farmers with critical decision-making for the 2010 planting season.  Reports with season harvest totals as well as per cutting yields are now available online at


West Virginia University Cooperative Extension Forage and Livestock Program

This site provides links to factsheets, tutorials, “Ye Olde Forage Library,” and other sites relevant to forage-livestock systems.

For more information, contact Ed Rayburn, Extension Specialist, at .

Large Round Bale Silage

Topics include advantages and disadvantages of large round bale silage, steps in making large round bale silage, large round bale silage handling equipment, large round bale silage storage, and feeding large round bale silage.

Hay Production Resources for New York State and Similar Climates

The demand for hay over the past few years has been very good. Both veteran and new farmers are growing this crop as the demand continues and the number of livestock operations keeps growing. However, when you try to find a manual on the many aspects of producing hay, it just does not seem to exist.

Veteran farmers need to fine-tune their knowledge, and new farmers have all the questions of a beginner. As a response, “Hay Production Resources” was put together to add to the knowledge of veteran farmers and provide a knowledge base for new farmers. The hay market is growing, but not just for any old hay. The horse, dairy goat, sheep, llama, alpaca, and other livestock operations want and need high-quality forage suited to their specific needs. Producing excellent hay for the specific needs of each type of customer requires a basic knowledge of agronomy, hay production, and livestock nutrition. The bar is being raised in this expanding hay market and “Hay Production Resources” is a start in providing information for those that want to meet the challenge.

This is a collection of articles, spreadsheets, and other resources. Most of them were gathered on the internet from University sources. Many are from outside of New York, but are applicable to the New York climate and agriculture industry. Areas with temperate climates like New York may find this information useful. However, all this information should be used with discretion since there are many regional differences and the agriculture industry is changing at an ever accelerating rate. 


Cornell’s Department of Crop and Soil Sciences Web Site

Cornell’s Department of Crop and Soil Sciences website includes research, extension, recent publications, and featured links.

Department of Crop and Soil Sciences
235 Emerson Hall
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853
Phone: (607) 255-5459
Fax: (607) 255-2644

What’s Cropping Up?

A bi-monthly newsletter with topics relating to New York State field crops and soils from Cornell University’s Department of Crop and Soil Sciences. View articles online by clicking on the link above. To receive a hard copy by mail, send your name and address to:

Larissa Smith
237 Emerson Hall
Ithaca, NY 14853
Phone: (607)255-2177
Fax: (607)255-2644

Nutrient Management Spear Program

The NMSP aims to improve grower and agricultural industry awareness of crop nutrient needs, crop quality, management of organic amendments, environmentally sound nutrient management practices, and overall soil fertility management in New York State. Additionally, they hope to improve understanding of nutrient release and risk for runoff and leaching losses from inorganic and organic amendments as affected by soil type, hydrology, time and rate of application, and the use of specific soil and fertilizer amendments.

Affordable Opportunities for Precision Farming: A practical way to support sustainable agriculture

This technical note provides a brief background on precision farming and describes ways in which its concepts and principles may be applied on farms without a substantial investment in equipment. This information is intended to help farmers who may or may not own a computer, but who are interested in long-term management strategies for improving their farm. Publication is in PDF format.

Canadian Organic Growers

This handbook is a basic “how-to” introduction to organic field crop production. It will be useful for conventional farmers wishing to convert to organic techniques, for farmers in the transition between conventional and organic practices, and for organic farmers who want to expand their crop rotations.

$25.95 plus $3.50 S&H per book or video. Make checks payable and send to:

Canadian Organic Growers Inc.
125 South Knowlesville Rd.
Knowlesville, New Brunswick, Canada E7L 1B1

ATTRA Field Crops Resources

ATTRA provides many publications for those interested in field crop production. These and other ATTRA publications can also be obtained for free by calling ATTRA at 1-800-346-9140, Monday-Friday, from 7am to 7pm CST.

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