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Yakima Valley hay farmers advised to have their crops assessed on Nov. 16

With some of the worst weather in memory, the 2011 western Washington hay season was very short and not at all sweet.

Washington State University will hold a workshop on evaluating the quality of hay on Wednesday, Nov. 16, from 7 to 9 p.m. The workshop will take place in McCollum Park at WSU Snohomish County Extension's Cougar Auditorium; located at 600 128th St. SE, in Everett.

Livestock owners are feeling the pinch with prices commanding a late-season premium. To help ensure livestock receive adequate nutrition, it's important to be able to assess baled hay quality.

WSU's Forage Agronomist Steve Fransen, speaker at the workshop, has been researching forage and crop quality for more than 25 years. He has authored numerous publications on grassland and pasture management and is known throughout the region as the 'go-to' person on hay and hay-land management techniques. Fransen wrote the book -along with Mike Hackett- on western Washington haymaking, publishing "Haymaking on the Westside" in 2001.

Attendees are encouraged to bring a bale of their current hay to add to the variety Fransen will be evaluating.

The early bird workshop cost is $15 through Nov. 15, or $20 payable at the door.

Register online at www.brownpapertickets.com/event/209208.

For registration information, contact Karie Christensen at (425) 357-6039 or e-mail christensen4@wsu.edu. For more information on the course, contact Andrew Corbin, corbina@wsu.edu or at (425) 357-6012.

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