Archive for September, 2019

Seasonal Diet Changes for Horses

Saturday, September 28th, 2019

Changing seasons can bring about potential problems for horses and horse owners. 

Pasture quality fluctuates with every season, but the shift in quality from summer to fall is significant. During the fall, there are often warm, sunny days and cool nights. Pasture plants manufacture sugars in the presence of water, carbon dioxide and sunshine, and then use those sugars to fuel growth during the night. However, when nighttime temperatures drop in the autumn, it becomes too chilly for plants to grow and the sugars are stored for later use.  This leads to a concentration of storSeasonal Diet Changes for Horsesed sugars in the plants, which may increase the risk of digestive upset or laminitis in some horses. Horses at most risk are those that are significantly overweight or those that have trouble managing normal blood sugar levels and are sensitive to sugar content in the diet.

Changing seasons also mean drastic swings in weather conditions and temperatures.  This, combined with a major diet adjustment of moving from pasture to hay, can increase the chance of digestive disturbances. While not scientifically proven, many horse owners and veterinarians have experienced what appears to be an association between changes in barometric pressure and incidence of colic episodes in horses. A dramatic drop in temperature often causes horses to drink less water, and at the same time, horse owners will often increase the amount of hay fed to help horses stay warm.  More hay and less water consumption together may lead to impaction colic.

As we move into fall and winter, hay becomes the major forage source for many horses.  Switching from pasture to hay or getting a new supply of hay represent as big a change to the horse as a change in grain. These significant dietary adjustments should ideally be made gradually to decrease the risk of digestive upset. Horses should be fed good-quality hay to maximize nutrition and minimize potential digestive problems. Good-quality hay, of any variety, will be clean and have a high leaf-to-stem ratio, small-diameter stems, few seed heads or blooms, a fresh smell and appearance, and a bright color (faded, yellow or brown color may indicate aged hay or poor storage conditions). The maturity of the plant at harvest determines the hay quality more than any other factor. Young, leafy, immature plants contain more protein, energy and minerals than older plants with thicker stems.  Also, as a plant matures, it contains more indigestible fiber (lignin), which reduces nutrient availability. Lower-quality hay must be supplemented with higher-quality feed to maintain horses’ good condition and health.

Fall is a season of transition and an important time to evaluate the quality of forage available for your horse and whether the grain ration is appropriate and adequate to meet your horse’s nutrient requirements. When winter arrives, horses must be in good condition to be able to withstand colder temperatures. Adjusting grain rations in the early fall will prevent weight loss due to lower-quality forage and, if horses need to gain weight, there is still time for a thinner horse to gain some before the cold weather really sets in.

Article Attributed to Purina and Dr. Karen E. Davidson

Karen E. Davison

Ph.D. – Director, Nutritionist, Equine Technical Solutions

2019 – 2020 Livestock Shows

Friday, September 20th, 2019

2019-2020 Livestock Shows for the upcoming season are right around the corner!

The calendar is set for the 2019-2020 Livestock Shows in Texas.  Here are the dates 2019-2020 Livestock Shows and locations happening throughout Texas. Go to the links for each Stock Show to learn more about event schedules, entry forms, ticket information and more:

Southwestern Exposition & Livestock Show (Fort Worth): January 17 – February 8, 2020

San Angelo Stock Show & Rodeo (San Angelo): January 31 – February 16, 2020

San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo (San Antonio): February 6 – 23, 2020

Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo (Houston): March 3 –  22, 2020

Star of Texas Fair & Rodeo (Austin): March 14 – 28, 2020

Livestock shows are the perfect way to spend some time with the family! Save the date and make plans to come to one of these rodeos near you!

October Garden Tips

Wednesday, September 18th, 2019

October Garden Tips

October Garden Tips

Usher in the autumn season with creative displays for indoors and out! Transformation quickly occurs with pots of mums, pansies, cabbages and ornamental peppers when combined with pumpkins, gourds and bales of hay.

Create a spectacular vignette in your landscape with bales of hay, a scarecrow or two, multiple sizes of pumpkins and gourds, pots of garden mums, corn stalks and for more texture consider adding old tools, a set of antlers or birdhouses. The autumn color palette offers a myriad of wonderful colors from which to choose; purples, rusts, gold’s, yellows, oranges, deep greens and browns can be used. Whether you are mixing colors or working with only one, use color abundantly to create massive appeal. Create a pyramid of pumpkins and gourds by selecting different colors and stacking them one on top of the other. Simply displaying a “pile” of pumpkins in the same color palette and different sizes will draw ones eye and interest to an area of your landscape.

Color Creations filled with blooming or colorful foliage plants can be used on patios and porches. Freshen up existing containers by nestling an interesting pumpkin or gourd in amongst the plants. Fill a favorite basket or pot with a mixture of produce for a simple, impressive look. Add a bit of nature into your containers with branches, corn husks, berries and other materials to enhance the overall look.

If you did not apply a pre-emergent herbicide to your lawn in September; apply it by the first two weeks of October. You should also fertilize your St. Augustine or Bermuda lawns no later than the first week of October.

October is bulb buying month. They are in fresh supply and will provide welcome late winter and early spring color for the landscape. Refrigerate Tulips and Hyacinth bulb for at least 45 to 60 days to provide enough chilling to bloom properly. Plant them in late November or early December.

 

Fall is Prime Time to Begin a Supplemental Feeding Program for Deer

Friday, September 6th, 2019

A buck can have the best genetics in the world, but without the proper nutrition, he’ll never achieve his potential. One way to stack the deck in his favor is to supplement his nutrition. Fall is an excellent time to begin this.
But before we talk about how to initiate a supplemental feeding program, let’s evaluate the big picture.
The goal: Produce larger bucks with massive antlers. Some big obstacles to that goal:

  • Lack of high quality forage in fall and winter.
  • Stresses due to inclement weather.
  • In fall, deer are heading into a natural period of low metabolism and poor appetite. During the rut, a buck may spend only 20 to 30 minutes per day eating.
  • Burned calories during the rut will greatly deplete any existing stockpiles of nutrients.
  • Antler growth is low on the priority list of functions required to sustain life, so next spring, antlers will receive “what’s left” of nutrients after life-sustaining needs have been met. Deer will not begin growing antlers until they’ve regained body condition.
  • Nutritional deficiencies early in life can stunt a buck’s growth and antler size for the rest of his life, even if he is well fed as an adult.

The opportunity: Fall is one of the best times to initiate a supplemental feeding program because…

  • Fall forage is less available and of poorer quality, so deer are already instinctively searching for new food sources and may be more accepting of an unfamiliar feed form.
  • Getting deer to fully accept a feed form such as pellets can take weeks or months. By beginning the transition in the fall, deer can be fully acclimated by the time severe weather arrives.
  • Antlers are high in protein content (which is why feeding corn won’t produce bigger antlers). Now is the prime time for the body to start stockpiling protein before spring antler-growing season.
  • When a deer goes into winter in optimal body condition, it is less likely to deplete all of its nutrition stores by spring.

The plan: Now that we’ve established the need for a supplemental nutrition program, how do we do it? Here are a few basic steps:

  • Provide the essentials. Deer need three basic things to survive and thrive—food, water and cover. If any one of these three critical factors is insufficient, deer will go elsewhere.
  • Place your feeders along frequently used runways or trails.
  • Be sure to place enough feeders so that deer do not have to travel more than one-half to three-quarters of a mile to a feeder. A good rule of thumb is one feeder per 300-400 acres.
  • Make sure your feeding area has good visibility, access to fresh, clean water and an easy escape route to nearby cover.
  • Place your feeders near the center of your land to keep deer on your property. Do not place feeders along fence lines, roads, power lines or in a large opening.
  • Choose the right diet. With 16 percent protein, AntlerMax® Rut & Conditioning Deer
  • Chow® 16 product is the ideal fall and winter body conditioning diet to set the stage for big antler growth next spring. It has a highly palatable, strong flavor to attract deer and AntlerMax® Deer & Elk Mineral supplement for strong, dense antler growth.
  • One free-choice feeder can comfortably feed 25 free-ranging deer, each consuming 1 to 2 pounds of AntlerMax® Rut & Conditioning Deer Chow® 16 product per day.
  • Deer do not recognize protein pellets as food, but they are accustomed to seeing corn as a food source in the wild. Entice them to the protein pellets by initially mixing corn with the pellets (start with 75 percent corn, 25 percent pellets).
  • Deer do not like abrupt changes in feed, so make them gradually. Once deer are accustomed to eating protein pellets from a feeder, gradually phase out the corn. (NOTE: Although corn provides digestible energy, corn inherently lacks the nutrients needed for strong antler growth. Corn may help deer survive, but it won’t help them thrive. In fact, gorging on too much corn too fast can actually cause a deer to founder and die.)
  • Remember, pellets should be a supplement to, not a replacement for forage.
  • Make sure deer have access to a constant supply of fresh, clean water near your feeder. A deer requires about 3 pounds of water for every pound of dry matter consumed.
  • Plan on feeding year ‘round so that bucks never slip into below-average body condition.
  • Otherwise, next spring, nutrients will be allocated to “playing catch up” instead of to antler growth.
  • Be sure to wear gloves when handling the feeder and feed. Human scent can repel deer.
  • Don’t shoot yourself in the foot. Once you’ve spent all this effort to attract deer to a feeding area, NEVER hunt near the feeding area.

Don’t get discouraged. It won’t happen overnight. In fact, the better the forage conditions, the tougher it is to get deer to start eating pellets. But fall is a prime opportunity.
There are many, many more tips and strategies for establishing a successful supplemental nutrition program than we can include here.

Stop by J&N Feed and Seed in Graham, Texas and talk to us about your supplemental feeding needs. We’re here to help.

Orange Deer Corn & Feeder Mix from Orange Corn Company

Wednesday, September 4th, 2019

orange deer cornOrange Deer Corn and Trailpheez Feeder Mix from the Orange Corn Company is now available at J&N Feed and Seed.  Bring the deer in close with Orange Deer Corn. This 100% irrigated Yellow Corn deer attractant is available in 40 lb. bags. It is a highly potent deer corn attractant mixed with all-natural minerals packed with the irresistible scent and taste of oranges.  Best of all, this irresistible deer attractant is grown and produced in Rio Medina, Texas.

Want to mix your own deer corn? Try the Orange Corn Company Trailpheez Feeder Mix, available in convenient 5-ounce packets. Use in feeders to give pain corn that irresistible orange flavor and scent.  Simple to use, just mix one 5 oz packet of Traipheez Feeder Mix with 150 pounds of corn.

 

It’s Time To Plant Food Plot Mixes

Wednesday, September 4th, 2019

Food Plot MixesA food plot is a planted area set aside to act as a food source for wildlife. The term was coined by the U.S. hunting and outdoor industries. Food plots generally consist of, but are not limited to, legumes (clovers, alfalfa, beans, etc.) or forage grasses.

We are at the start date to plant winter food plots for deer. Product selection in this area is vast.  At J&N Feed and Seed, we carry a large number of food plot mixes including wheat, oats, winter peas, chicory, clover, turnips and alfalfa.  Stop by today and choose your plot mix. If you have any questions please give us a call or stop by the store.

Fall Seed & Fertilizer

Tuesday, September 3rd, 2019

fall seedNow is the time to get your fall seed. We have over 40 types of seed including wheat, oats, barley,  assorted ryegrass seed including Elbon and Marshall Rye, and additives such as chicory and buck plot mixes.  Whether your seeding for livestock grazing, wildlife feed plots or something else, we’ve got the fall seed for you! Not sure what you need? Stop by and talk with our experts, we’re here to help!

We also carry a variety of bagged and bulk fertilizer. Need help getting your bulk fertilizer home? No problem! Use one of our fertilizer buggies free of charge! Stop by J & N Feed and Seed or call us for delivery at (940) 549-4631.

Annual Rye Grass Seed

Sunday, September 1st, 2019

oregon ryegrassFall is an important transition time for our yards and pastures as we start preparing for the cold winter months ahead. During the fall months, one way to start winterizing your yard is by planting annual ryegrass.

Annual Ryegrass is one of the most popular grass seeds for lawn and pasture purposes for the winter. Ryegrass is a cool-season grass that is very adaptable to many soils and climates. Ryegrass also germinates quickly and has prolific growing rates which helps it establish well in many different areas.  Start planting your cool-season grass seeds when the fall temperatures reach 75° and are dropping.

Come into J&N Feed and Seed today to pick up grass seed, fertilizer, and pre-emergents to start preparing your yard to stay healthy this winter!

Closed On Labor Day

Sunday, July 28th, 2019
Sep
2

Labor DayJ&N Feed and Seed will be closed on Monday, September 2, 2019, in observation of Labor Day.  Enjoy the holiday!

Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.

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