Q:

How many bales of hay can be harvested per acre?

A:

Quick Answer

The total number of bales of hay that can be harvested per acre varies from place to place, although a typical hay farm in western Oregon may produce between 62 and 165 bales per acre. In Florida, the average yield for each cutting ranges from 60 to 80 bales per acre.

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Full Answer

Hay is a type of vegetation, generally grass that is grown, mown, dried and cut to be used as fodder for horses and other farm animals. The total yield that each hay field produces is determined by several factors, including the type of herbage, plant age at the time of harvest, fertilization plan, hay quality and bale weight, which refers to how tightly the hay is bundled.

In western Oregon, low productivity hay pastures typically average around 2 tons, or 4,000 lbs. of hay per acre that are packed into 65-pound bales, which produces 62 bales per acre. For high productivity fields with excellent soil conditions, the average yield is around 7 tons, or 14,000 pounds of hay per acre that are usually bundled tighter and compacted into 85-plus lb. bales, which generates 165 bales per acre.

Hay fields in Florida average four cuttings on an annual basis. Each hay crop yields between 1.5 and 2 tons, or 3,000 and 4,000 lbs. per acre, which results in 60 to 80 bales an acre. A large portion of this is used as horse feed for the state's growing equine population.

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