Even though the daily highs are at or more than 100 degrees, now is the time to start thinking about winter pasture, according to Dr. Gerald Evers, professor of forage management at the Texas A&M University Agricultural Research and Extension Center in Overton.

With a prolonged summer drought cutting hay reserves short this year, producers can hope the long-range forecasts of a wet winter ring true, Evers said.

"Which forage species should I plant? How many acres do I need? Should I plant any winter pasture at all? These are all legitimate questions that we will answer at upcoming winter pasture programs," Evers said.

The Texas Forage and Grassland Council, Texas Agricultural Extension Service, and Texas Agricultural Experiment Station will jointly present a one-day program on winter pastures at three East Texas locations in September. Locations and dates will be:

--Sam Rayburn Memorial Student Center at Texas A&M University at Commerce, Sept. 15;

--Texas A&M University Agricultural Research and Extension Center at Beaumont (Hwy 90, 10 miles west of Beaumont), Sept. 22.

In addition to answering the common questions, conference attendees will learn which forage species are available, when and how much to plant, fertilization, management, utilization and economics. Clover inoculation, management and nitrogen fixation and transfer also will be discussed.

The program will begin at 9 a.m. with registration from 8 to 9 a.m., and it will end about 3 p.m. Pre-registration is $25 per person if received a week before the meeting date.

Send the pre-registration fee to Texas Forage and Grassland Council, PO Box 94, Georgetown, TX 78627. Registration at the door will be $30. Cost of the noon meal and proceedings of the presentations are included in the registration fee. Contact Dana Tucker with the Texas Forage and Grassland Council at 512-238-0515 for further information.

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