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 11-04-2003, 09:13 Post: 67959
nccfixit



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 Maintaining Old Hay Fields

I have 3 hay fields that I want to maintain. I can't find any farmers in my area that want the hay. I have a JD 4410 4WD to mow these field (about 30 acres) and looking for advice on what type of implement will do the job that I am looking for. I used a 5' brush hog and I am not really happy the the results, I am looking for a better finish cut. If I mow the fields with my mid mount finish mower I will need to mow it at least 2 or 3 time a year. I thought about a side bar cutter but that cuts the grass in long lenghts, ideal for bailing. I want to mulch the grass so it willing rot back into the ground faster. What about a Flail Mower, will that do the job any better or quicker than a finish mower? Thanks for Your Help.






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 11-04-2003, 09:38 Post: 67963
Billy

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 Maintaining Old Hay Fields

Your best bet would to keep looking for someone to cut it for hay. I have 10 acres I let someone cut and I make anywhere from 700 to 900 bucks a year.

If you want this hay meadow to look like a yard, forget the hay deal. It'll always look like a pasture.

I think the cheapest way to keep it looking fairly decent would be to bush hog it often. Mowing 30 acres is gonna be time consuming for sure.






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 11-04-2003, 09:57 Post: 67964
AC5ZO

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 Maintaining Old Hay Fields

Years ago, I set up a hitch of three flail mowers for a similar situation. These mowers each had a gas motor and cut a 4' wide swath. The three would cut 11'-12' in a single pass.

Flail mowers probably do mulch the grass a bit more than a rotary mower, but you still have to mow it often. If you have ever run a string trimmer into tall grass to quickly and seen the string fold back and stop cutting, then you will understand what happens with a flail mower if it is overloaded. The hammers will fold back and stall the motor. So, these mowers are not going to allow you to go longer between mowing.

Have you placed an ad in the local paper or at a bulletin board at the feed or hardware store for the hay?






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 11-04-2003, 10:02 Post: 67965
Chief



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 Maintaining Old Hay Fields

I agree with Billy, he pretty well summed it up. I finish mow about 8 acres on my property with a MMM on my 4410 and it is time consuming especially if you let it grow to tall. The rotary cutter is the best bet but if you want the pasture to look better; more frequent mowing will be required. If you have a finish mower, you can keep it cut with that provide you have carefully inspected for and removed any rocks or debry which the finish mower might hit. It will need cutting at least every other week during the growing season (at least mine does) which is indeed time consuming. Letting it go any more than this just over loads the MMM. You call, just depends on how much time you want to spend on it. 30 acres is a lot of lawn to maintain and I am like Billy; I would rather get the money for the hay.

Flail mowers make a nice cut but they AIN'T cheap. Tieing up nearly $3,000 in a flail mower may not be what you had in mind.






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 11-04-2003, 11:18 Post: 67977
F350Lawman



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 Maintaining Old Hay Fields

Why not try mowing the stuff that is close to the road, house, whatever and let the rest stay a little longer.

You may be able to finish mow the close stuff and hog the rest. Trying to keep 30 acres finished looking is going to be real tough unless you have huge machines and or staff.

Is anyone really going to see ALL the 30 acres or is it just for piece of mind?

Sounds like ya' got the JR Ewing Ranch there Smile






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 11-04-2003, 11:46 Post: 67982
AC5ZO

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 Maintaining Old Hay Fields

If it is fenced, you might also allow someone to run some cattle in the location. My mother still lives on a portion of our old farmland and that is what she does. She gets rent for allowing the cattle to stay there and does not have any maintenance to contend with on the land. The cattle owner is responsible for repairing all the fences and so forth.






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