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Old 10-27-2010, 09:22 AM   #1
Halter broke
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: South
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Rye Grass???

I have always heard that horses should NOT eat rye grass in the winter. I also know a couple of people that DO ALLOW their horses to eat rye grass (they actually plant their pastures in it).

Is is safe for horses to eat rye grass?
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Old 10-27-2010, 10:32 AM   #2
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Location: Mt. Juliet, Tennessee
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We've planted winter rye before.

And we also fed the horses rye hay with no problems, they really gobbled it up..

Acutally, it was cut late and FULL of seeds, and let me tell you, that early spring our pastures were full of nice green rye
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Old 10-27-2010, 10:36 AM   #3
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I have planted winter rye several years and my horses ate it just fine. Mine is mixed with fescue and orchard grass though, it's not straight rye.
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Old 10-27-2010, 12:10 PM   #4
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We plant two small paddocks in rye grass and use that as winter grazing/turnout. My 29 year old Walker eats it just fine!
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Old 10-27-2010, 12:14 PM   #5
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My pastures are orchard and bermuda grass. Every fall I overseed with annual rye. It's a good mix.
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Old 10-28-2010, 01:26 PM   #6
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Rye is a great winter forage for horses. You do have to be careful, in my experience, when it comes up, it comes up green and lush FAST. I'm VERY conservative with putting the horses on it. I have big enough fields that it usually gets to the point where it goes to seed (the horses don't keep it down fast enough), and again, I have to be VERY careful. It's funny to watch them eat it, they go right along the tops and bite off just the seeds. Tastes great, but could easily founder a horse if they eat too much. I sometimes do the math and for us, it's actually cheaper to feed round bales than to do the seeding with annual rye. It is so nice to have green fields for so much of the year though!
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