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4-way hay??

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  • 4-way hay??

    Today the one feed store in town (out of 4) who consistently has good Orchard Grass tells me they are no longer carrying it because they had to downsize their hay yard. I picked up a bale last Thursday, and wasn't told ANYTHING. Needless to say, I'm pissed.

    I refuse to feed my horse Bermuda hay. He LOVES the OG, and I've been topping it off with a flake of alfalfa in his freedom feeder. I literally stuff that thing full every day so he can graze. His weight is perfect; I want him to maintain. I really don't want to feed him pure alfalfa since he's already on the hot side. OG is very VERY difficult to find right now, hence the reason the other stores don't have any. I've got my name and number down at the store who is most likely to get a shipment in first, and I reserved 5 bales (max allowed).

    The only other hay available in the area is a 4-way of Oat, Wheat, Barley, and Alfalfa. When I called to ask percentages he said it's all equal parts. I've never heard of this type of hay, and have no idea if I'd be able to feed it nearly free-choice like I do the OG without him blowing up like a tick or bouncing off the walls of his corral.

    Anyone fed this hay? Any recommendations? Super frustrated right now. Luckily I picked up their last bale of OG, so if I do make the switch I can do it over a week. Ideally I'd keep him on OG, but the trick is finding it!
    runnjump86 Instagram

    Horse Junkies United guest blogger

  • #2
    Originally posted by runNjump86 View Post

    The only other hay available in the area is a 4-way of Oat, Wheat, Barley, and Alfalfa. When I called to ask percentages he said it's all equal parts. I've never heard of this type of hay, and have no idea if I'd be able to feed it nearly free-choice like I do the OG without him blowing up like a tick or bouncing off the walls of his corral.
    he is of course full of crap

    it may have been planted in "equal parts" (which by the way I doubt) but it cannot express itself in the bales in equal parts...

    NO MIX OF HAY CAN...sorry had to type big there as many people think you can actually give an actual % and not be guessing or lying...you CAN give what stands in the field with it but past that is just salesmanship really....anyway...

    basically, what you have is a way to rejuvenate a dying alfalfa stand for "one last cutting" with winter cover crops...as alfalfa seed is high and cover crops are very low in cost

    depending on when it was cut the alfalfa may not be expressed at all in the bales...and the chances are the grain covers were very old and tall when it was expressed....my wheat and rye are over 2 feet tall and alfalfa is maybe 5 inches but hey it's got the "a" word in it right ??

    Tamara
    Last edited by Tamara in TN; Apr. 17, 2012, 11:13 PM.
    Production Acres,Pro A Welsh Cobs
    I am one of the last 210,000 remaining full time farmers in America.We feed the others.

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    • Original Poster

      #3
      Originally posted by Tamara in TN View Post
      he is off course full of crap

      it may have been planted in "equal parts" (which by the way I doubt) but it cannot express itself in the bales in equal parts...

      NO MIX OF HAY CAN...sorry had to type big there as many people think you can actually give an actual % and not be guessing or lying...you CAN give what stands in the field with it but past that is just salesmanship really....anyway...

      basically, what you have is a way to rejuvenate a dying alfalfa stand for "one last cutting" with winter cover crops...as alfalfa seed is high and cover crops are very low in cost

      depending on when it was cut the alfalfa may not be expressed at all in the bales...and the chances are the grain covers were very old and tall when it was expressed....my wheat and rye are over 2 feet tall and alfalfa is maybe 5 inches but hey it's got the "a" word in it right ??

      Tamara
      LOL yeah. I didn't feel like arguing with him over the phone since I had came thisclose to throwing a mild tantrum in the actual store.

      This is how it went:

      Me: "Can you tell me the percentages in the 4-way hay?"
      Employee: "Well its really good hay! From what I can tell it's got a pretty equal mix of everything in it!"
      Me: "Sounds good, thanks!"
      runnjump86 Instagram

      Horse Junkies United guest blogger

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      • #4
        Originally posted by runNjump86 View Post
        LOL yeah. I didn't feel like arguing with him over the phone since I had came thisclose to throwing a mild tantrum in the actual store.

        This is how it went:

        Me: "Can you tell me the percentages in the 4-way hay?"
        Employee: "Well its really good hay! From what I can tell it's got a pretty equal mix of everything in it!"
        Me: "Sounds good, thanks!"
        he should have just said "no mam' there is no way to tell visually,but you are welcome to come and see it"

        Tamara
        Production Acres,Pro A Welsh Cobs
        I am one of the last 210,000 remaining full time farmers in America.We feed the others.

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        • #5
          A lot of people in my area feed 3-way and 4-way. I don't care for it mostly because it looks like straw. It will also attract mice.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by newhorsemommy View Post
            A lot of people in my area feed 3-way and 4-way. I don't care for it mostly because it looks like straw. It will also attract mice.
            Most of the samples of this I have seen are real high in sugar. Seen some 30% of dry matter as WSC. I've had some high sugar hay here for various studies, and the mice ALWAYS go for the high sugar stuff, often ignoring bales of low sugar stuff below it.
            Are you feeding your horse like a cow? www.safergrass.org

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            • Original Poster

              #7
              Blech. I definitely want to stay away from high sugar hay. Me and my paranoia That and I HATE mice. And where there are mice, there are snakes, and a rattlesnake snoozing under my hay isn't what I consider "cute".

              *sigh* Looks like I'll be calling every feed store within driving distance trying to buy hay!
              runnjump86 Instagram

              Horse Junkies United guest blogger

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Katy Watts View Post
                Most of the samples of this I have seen are real high in sugar. Seen some 30% of dry matter as WSC. I've had some high sugar hay here for various studies, and the mice ALWAYS go for the high sugar stuff, often ignoring bales of low sugar stuff below it.
                This. I was trying to find a grass hay substitute, but in searching discovered our 3 way (Barley, Oat and Wheat) is SUPER high in sugars. Not what I was looking for!

                Also, most horses eat the grain heads and leave the stems.

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                • #9
                  I have fed 4 way, if its like I remember there was not a lot of alfalfa in it. and when there was it was the course stemmy alfalfa.

                  I feed 3 way without no alfalfa, and the seed heads in the hay attracts birds, mice and ground squirrels. I mix mine with orchard.
                  I wish I could afford all orchard. And the stuff I have been getting is dusty and weedy.


                  My 3 way is the same and it is chopped up so the flakes disintegrate as they fall off the bale.

                  As bad as the hay is my guys are getting porky on it.

                  No storage at my place means I'm a slave to what the local feed store carries.

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                  • #10
                    Orchard has always been difficult to find in this area at this time. I used to get soooo frustrated, and I finally bought a tuffshed just so I could store 25 bales for my guy when the feed stores went dry.

                    Don't know who you have tried aside of Mary's and Carters, but El Toro Tack used to carry it in El Toro, and I think the place in Wildomar (R Grain Hay?).

                    That said, I gave up on finding orchard when I moved to Ventura and did three-way and bermuda. And it worked fine, I can't say I saw a change.

                    I might like the four-way, who is carrying it?

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                    • #11
                      Depends on the four way. I fed it to a few of my horses last year, it's good for putting weight on a hard keeper. Good quality grain hays don't bother me, but do be aware that they are really high in sugar generally. It's a completely different hay than Orchard, so I'd be cautious switching high and dry. I'm surprised you still have grain hays down there.... we've been out for months, and still have a little bit of Orchard left. It's just a really bad time for hay right now
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                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Originally posted by 3Spots View Post
                        Orchard has always been difficult to find in this area at this time. I used to get soooo frustrated, and I finally bought a tuffshed just so I could store 25 bales for my guy when the feed stores went dry.

                        Don't know who you have tried aside of Mary's and Carters, but El Toro Tack used to carry it in El Toro, and I think the place in Wildomar (R Grain Hay?).

                        That said, I gave up on finding orchard when I moved to Ventura and did three-way and bermuda. And it worked fine, I can't say I saw a change.

                        I might like the four-way, who is carrying it?

                        Kahoots in Ramona, but I believe they have to carry the same stuff at all their locations.

                        I absolutely don't need a hay to put weight on him; he's an easy keeper, which is why I'm so pleased with the OG. I'm trying to find somewhere that will sell me a bulk load, even if its just ten bales, and store it in our backyard
                        runnjump86 Instagram

                        Horse Junkies United guest blogger

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                        • #13
                          San Luis Rey Clinic feeds it to their patients -- you might ask if you can buy some from them?

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