With our Texas temperatures heating up, J&N Feed and Seed is working to find low volume watering products that will help conserve water and provide an effective way to keep your landscape alive. We are now stocking Raindrip Automatic Watering System kits. These low volume, drip irrigation kits, are customized for different areas of your landscape and garden and can convert your sprinkler system to a drip irrigation system. Installing a drip irrigation system is simple.
Raindrip Automatic Watering Kits with Timer
The Raindrip Automatic Watering Systems are simple to use drip watering kit that waters flowers, shrubs, and trees in your landscape areas (not for lawn use). They’re water efficient, simple to install and most* include a battery-operated timer so you can set your system to water automatically. Click here to read more about Raindrip Watering Kits.
May is the official start of mosquito hunting season. No hunting license is required, there is no bag limit and there is no magic bullet for controlling mosquitoes. The best battle plan is to eliminate the environment where mosquitoes live and breed.
Here are 4 Ways To Prevent Mosquitoes from taking over:
Stop the larva by eliminating standing water. Clean out your gutters so they drain properly. Keep the grass cut short and don’t over water your landscape. Check drain lines, along with rain barrels and saucers for potted plants, which often seem to have standing water.
Promote habitats for the purple martins, bats, and dragonflies. They don’t eat as much as you think but every little bit helps. Plant a variety of herbs (including citronella), as most have a repellant effect. Change outside lighting from white to yellow light bulbs or lenses, as they will not attract these flying vampires. Don’t forget the citronella Tiki torches and candles. They have a small effect on mosquitoes but you will get that island feeling.
Apply sprays and granule repellents to mosquito prone areas. One of the best all-natural sprays is a product called Yardsafe by Cedarcide. Others include citronella, garlic and orange oil sprays. Synthetic sprays include permethrin, cypermethrin, and lambda-cyhalothrin. Granulated cedar and garlic work as repellents. Permethrin granules are used as broad-spectrum insecticides. The all-natural repellent sprays will last about a day but the granules will last substantially longer. Synthetics, both liquid and granulated will last from two days to a month. The length of effectiveness for all products will hinge on the weather.
Apply repellents when outdoors. The last resort is to hose yourself down with a repellant of some sort. Products that contain cedar and marigold oils are on the all-natural side. Synthetics include Deet, permethrin and believe or it not, Avon’s Skin so Soft also contains synthetics. For better or worse, products containing Deet are the most effective.
Whether you buy a cattle mineral off the shelf at a retail store, walk into your local dealer and request their ‘standard’ mineral or work closely with your nutritionist to select a mineral supplement for your herd, sorting through the various mineral types can sometimes be a daunting task.
It may even be a purchase decision that’s so complex you simply cling to the generic or most popular cattle mineral available in your area.
But, the generic or popular option may not be the best choice for your herd’s mineral requirements. If you’re not feeding a quality supplemental mineral, you may see the consequences of mineral deficiencies later in the form of decreased calf weaning weights, small or weak calves, decreased milk production, reduced or delayed conception and even poor immunity.
Not all cattle minerals are created equal, and it’s important to recognize the differences in minerals that are out there. Even though mineral nutrition is complicated, you can easily evaluate or ask questions about a few different elements of a mineral supplement.
Here are three things to look for in your cattle mineral:
1. Balanced cattle mineral nutrition
A complete mineral should contain the proper balance and ratios of all 14 essential cattle minerals. Those minerals include: calcium, copper, cobalt, iodine, iron, magnesium, manganese, molybdenum, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, sodium, sulphur and zinc.
A proper zinc-to-copper ratio is one of the biggest considerations when choosing a mineral, with a ratio of 3-to-1 being preferable. Zinc and copper are commonly deficient microminerals in cattle, and the ratio is critical because of how closely zinc and copper absorption are tied.1
2. Large particle size ingredients and rain protection
Rain and other elements can quite literally wash a mineral investment down the drain, or can alternately turn your mineral into a brick-type substance which cattle often refuse to eat.
A weatherized mineral should not just be water-resistant, it should be wind-resistant as well. You don’t want the particles to be so small that the wind picks them up and blows them away. A weatherized mineral that includes a larger particle can remedy this problem.
The biggest drawback of a non-weather resistant mineral is that cattle just aren’t going to consume it. Daily mineral needs to be consumed, and if you’re not seeing consumption because the mineral has been turned into a hard block or because the particles are being blown away, then your investment is a loss.
3. Organic, bioavailable mineral sources
Another important aspect when choosing a mineral is to make sure it has bioavailable mineral sources. The bioavailability of a mineral source alters the absorptive ability of the trace minerals eliciting their full benefit.
Mineral sources that are more bioavailable may be a bit more costly, but they can be a good fit for herds with marginal trace mineral status, consistent reproduction issues, overall herd health problems, foot problems or in areas with forage or water issues.
Some key trace minerals that you might look to for bioavailability would be zinc, manganese, copper and cobalt. These minerals are required for a variety of functions including, but not limited to, immunity, reproduction, growth and fiber digestion.
Watch the video below to see the difference between Wind and Rain® Storm® cattle mineral and a non-weatherized version.
– Purina Animal Nutrition, Lead Nutritionist, Beef Technical Solutions