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Pasture Management Workshop Series

Please join us for a pasture management workshop series led by UMass Extension professor and soil science expert Dr. Masoud Hashemi at 5 Doe Valley Road in Petersham!

Managing Soil Fertility for Greener Pastures and the Environment

Saturday, October 9th (1-3pm)

Well-managed pastures contribute significantly to the sustainability of animal operations and the environment’s quality. However, pasture management begins with the assessment of soil fertility. Testing soil is crucial to greener pastures and is considered the first step in pasture management. A meaningful soil test provides important baseline information and also guidelines for efficient use of lime, fertilizer, manure, and compost.

The first session on Saturday, October 9th will teach you how to take soil samples for meaningful results, process the collected soil samples, read the soil test results provided by the testing lab, and interpret the results.

Grazing Management

Saturday, October 23rd (1-3pm)

The second session on Saturday, October 23rd will focus on grazing management – the manipulation of grazing animals and pasture plants to reach a desired result. In this session, we will discuss pasture growth trend, grazing height, pasture resting period, frequency of animal rotation, estimating pasture forage inventory and forage need.

Dr. Masoud Hashemi is an Extension Professor and a soil health specialist at the Stockbridge School of Agriculture, University of Massachusetts Amherst. He is the Team Leader for the Crops, Dairy, Livestock, and Equine program of UMass Extension. Dr. Hashemi, a graduate of UMass (1990), has more than 30 years of field experience in agronomy, nutrient management, and soil health. His research is primarily focused on sustainability of farming systems through diversified cropping systems. He is specifically interested in pasture management, extending grazing season, and minimizing the impact of animal operations on the environment. Dr. Hashemi teaches pasture management online in the spring.

Both sessions will include a 20–30-minute outdoor activity, so please dress appropriately for the weather. These workshops are free and open to the public. The ideal audience is landowners who own pastureland and/or hay fields.

Registration is required. You will receive a confirmation email after RSVPing with driving directions. (If you do not see a confirmation email in your inbox, your registration did not go through and we ask you to try again.) These workshops are limited to 25 participants.