Online tool helps select forage species based on soil characteristics, use, longevity, and pH


When deciding on a forage species or mix for hay or pasture, the options can be overwhelming. A new resource can help make the decision easier and can assist in determining seeding rates, weed management, and more.

The Forage U-Pick tool, created by the Beef Cattle Research Council (BCRC), matches forage species to growing conditions, soil type, and forage utilization and assists with establishment rates to improve yield, vigour, and quality. A well-matched forage can reduce costs, improve utilization and the number of grazing days, and increase profitability, BCRC says in a press release announcing the tool.

Forages Suited to My Field allows you to choose the province, soil zone, or a regional zone, and then starts with a list of forage species that are suited to the selected zone.

Researchers have been documenting forage suitability to specific zones, under different climatic conditions, for 60 years. That list is updated continually, and all those updates are included in Forage U-Pick. The website also offers advice on selecting forage for different areas of a field, setting out a seeding rate, and information for weed control.

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