Bales of hay in a field in Cheshire England UK summer sunshine and a blue sky
Contributor:Tony Smith / Alamy Stock Photo
File size:32.1 MB (2 MB Compressed download)
Releases:Model - no | Property - noDo I need a release?
Dimensions:3899 x 2874 px | 33 x 24.3 cm | 13 x 9.6 inches | 300dpi
Date taken:3 September 2013
Location:Cheshire England UK
Hay production and harvest, colloquially known as "making hay", "haymaking", or "doing hay", involves a multiple step process: cutting, drying or "curing", processing, and storing. Hayfields do not have to be reseeded each year in the way that grain crops are, but regular fertilizing is usually desirable, and overseeding a field every few years helps increase yield. Methods and the terminology to describe the steps of making hay have varied greatly throughout history, and many regional variations still exist today. However, whether done by hand or by modern mechanized equipment, tall grass and legumes at the proper stage of maturity must be cut, then allowed to dry (preferably by the sun), then raked into long, narrow piles known as windrows. Next, the cured hay is gathered up in some form (usually by some type of baling process) and placed for storage into a haystack or into a barn or shed to protect it from moisture and rot.