Date of this Version



© 1974, The Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska on behalf of the University of Nebraska–Lincoln Extension. All rights reserved.


This NebGuide describes principles of successful hay crop harvest, silage preservation, management techniques to obtain high quality hay crop silage, and proper use of silage storage facilities.

Most hay (legume and grass) crops can be ensiled, or made into silage, successfully. For best feeding value and preservation, consider the special requirements for ensiling each crop.

Hays to be ensiled should be selected on the basis of economics. Which are the most profitable for supplying nutrients? For example, legumes have a relatively higher value for dairy herds than for beef finishing operations because of dairy cows' higher requirement for protein.