Montgomery Soil Conservation District
Montgomery County, Maryland
In concert with the University of Maryland Extension, the MSCD periodically offers pasture walks and equine workshops, the most popular being the Horse Management Workshop.
For the latest workshop dates, see the Events page.
If you are curious about the quality of your hay, the district offers free forage sampling for equine and other animal operations in Montgomery County. We no longer loan or rent out the sampling probes, but we are willing to schedule a time to sample your hay that is convenient to you and your operation.
The best time to have the hay sampled is after it has fully cured and/or when you have purchased a large number of bales and rolls from a single source. District specialists will endeavor to take a sample that is representative of the lot.
You may download the PDF below to learn more about forage testing and some of the labs in our area which can perform the analysis.
Herbal Pastures for Improved Horse Health
Forages Fertility: Basics, Nutrients, Soil Testing
By Professor Gurpal Toor
Video length: 38 mins 34 sec
Soil basics: organic matter, composition, pH, liming
Soil testing: diagnosing problems, reading reports
Heavy Use Areas
Video length: 31 mins 22 sec
Video length: 18 mins 8 sec
Choosing hay: color, leafiness, and maturity