CLEARING RIVERBANKS AND DITCHES, HOW IS IT DONE?15/05/2023
PREVENTING AND TREATING LAWN DISEASES TO KEEP YOUR LAWN GREEN AND HEALTHY05/06/2023
- Meaning and techniques of haymaking: harvesting, mowing and baling hay
Haymaking is the process of harvesting, mowing and baling hay, which is an essential source of food for livestock during the winter months. Here is a description of the main phases of haymaking:
Harvesting: hay can be harvested using mowing machines, which cut grass at a certain height above the ground. These machines can be pulled by animals or a tractor. There are also disc mowers that cut grass with rotating discs. In both cases, grass is cut in rows, which are then harvested.
Drying: after mowing, grass must be dried to remove any excess water and prevent the formation of mould. Various techniques are used for drying hay including open-air drying (requiring days of exposure to the sun) or using mechanical dryers. Drying can also be facilitated by rotating hay using appropriate equipment.
Baling: after drying, hay is pressed into bales for easy transport and storage. Bales can vary in shape and size, depending on requirements and available equipment. Bales are pressed using special machines, such as hay balers, which compress hay and bind it with wire or rope.
Storage: hay bales can be stored inside suitable structures, such as barns, or outdoors, covered with special covers to protect them from rain and humidity. When storing hay special attention must be given to the air quality inside storage facilities to avoid the formation of mould or spontaneous combustion.
Haymaking generally requires specific skills and the use of special equipment to ensure the quality of the hay and its preservation over time.
- Haymaking equipment: mowers, hay mowers and hay balers
The main equipment used in haymaking is described below:
Mowers: mowers are machines used to cut grass at a certain height above the ground. The various types of mowers include bar mowers, which cut grass with a bar consisting of a series of blades, and disc mowers, which use rotating discs for cutting. These mowers can be pulled by animals or a tractor.
Hay mowers: once cut, grass must be collected and piled up to dry. Various machines are used for this purpose, such as windrowers, which collect grass and deposit it in rows, and hay rakes, which go around rows of grass and collect it in piles. Various combination machines cut grass and harvest it in a single operation.
Hay balers: hay balers are used to compress dried grass into bales. Various types of balers are available, such as cylindrical balers, which compress hay into cylindrical bales, and square balers, which produce square bales of hay. Presses are either manual or mechanical, and can be driven by animals or a tractor. In general, the equipment used in haymaking is designed to optimise the efficiency and quality of the haymaking process, thereby reducing the time and labour required for harvesting, cutting and baling hay.