General information

Silo harvesting technology: which crops are suitable

Siloing is one of the most common and reliable ways to preserve green fodder. Compared to other methods, ensiling is less dependent on weather conditions.

The success of conservation of green fodder depends on both agrotechnical and technological methods. Such methods include: determining the plant's fertility, establishing the optimal time for their harvesting, controlling the moisture of the raw materials, laying and temperature conditions, compaction and sealing methods for the silage, using drugs to improve the quality and safety of nutrients, conducting organizational and technical measures, etc. .

The main silage crops on farms are maize, sunflower, and their mixtures with legume-grass herbs, annual pea-vico-grass mixtures, perennial grass grasses, vegetable waste, etc.

All these plants are characterized by a high degree of fertility. By the time of ensiling, they, as a rule, have excessive moisture, which largely negatively affects the quality of the silo and the amount of losses. Therefore, one of the tasks in the organization of silage feed is the choice of the optimal phase of plant development and the use of methods to reduce their moisture.

Optimal harvesting time for corn silage - end of the milky state and waxy ripeness of grain, high-oat mixes - phase of wax ripeness of grain in the first two lower tiers of beans, sunflower - from the beginning to 50% of flowering, baskets, perennial grass grasses - earing phase . Delay in harvesting silage crops adversely affects the quality of silage. If, for example, the nutritional value of 1 kg of dry matter of cereal grasses in the phase of entering the tube is 0.95-1.0 feed. units, then in the flowering phase - about 0.70 feed. units with a simultaneous sharp decrease in the content of digestible protein and vitamins.

Siloing of green fodder of high humidity, as a rule, is accompanied by large losses of nutrients with flowing juice. Corn during the period of milky ripeness has a humidity of 82-87%, so the weight loss with juice reaches 30%, and the silage is of poor quality. It is possible to regulate the moisture and silage of the raw materials through the joint ensiling of high-moisture raw materials with dry components, mixed sowing of silage crops with grain and leguminous crops, and wilting of silage raw materials.

To prevent losses with flowing juice, it is advisable to add straw cutting to the fermented mass. With a moisture content of 85% and above, it is necessary to add 15–20% of dry chopped straw, and for a raw material moisture of 80% - 10–12%. In this case, the moisture content of the finished silo will be in the range of 70-75%.

Siloing can be carried out in layers. At the bottom of the trench lay crushed straw layer of 40-50 cm, then a layer of green mass of 30-40 cm and again a layer of straw. Each layer of straw and green mass is thoroughly mixed and compacted with a bulldozer with simultaneous introduction of various preservative preparations.

The use of mixed crops of high humidity (maize, sunflower) with oats, pea-vico-oat mixtures when preparing silage is an effective way to reduce losses, moisture and acidity of the silage, as well as to increase its nutritional value.

One-year and perennial legume-grass mixtures should be pre-wilted to a moisture content of 70-75%. The silage from the dried mass has more favorable biochemical and organoleptic indicators than the silage from grasses with high humidity.

The magnitude of the losses with the resulting juice depends on the size of the cutting particles. When the moisture content of the mass is within 75%, the amount of cutting may be smaller (up to 30 mm), at a humidity of 80% and higher, the grinding should be larger (up to 50 mm or more).

When loading trenches, vehicles should not be allowed to enter the previously laid fermented mass. It is better to unload the mass at the end of the trench and move the bulldozer to the right place. This will prevent feed contamination of the soil and significantly accelerate the unloading of vehicles.

When ensiling raw materials with moisture up to 75%, the green mass must be strongly compacted from the very beginning to the end of the storage load. This is necessary for the rapid displacement of air from the mass, to prevent its heating, less precipitation of feed and more rational use of storage facilities. Every day after completion of the work, the mass must be additionally compacted for at least 3-4 hours, especially at the trench walls. Care must be taken to ensure that the temperature of the mass does not rise during the laying period, since this leads to a sharp decrease in digestibility, especially of protein.

When ensiling with a mass of excess water content (80% and above) without adding straw, tamping should be carried out moderately, only in the process of laying and leveling it on the trench surface. In addition, such a mass should not be compacted, since it leads to increased losses due to juice flow. The deadline for laying one storehouse, 3–3.5 m high and with a capacity of 2–3 thousand tons, should not exceed four days. After filling the trench, the mass is quickly covered with plastic wrap and a layer of earth or peat up to 10 cm thick.

Particular attention should be paid to the correct formation of the surface of the collar, so that precipitation does not linger in the grooves and does not penetrate into the depth of the mass. The edges of the film along the walls of the trench should be carefully sealed with a primer in the form of a strip 25-30 cm wide and about 15 cm thick. The method of covering is crucial for the quality and safety of food.

Annual and perennial legume-cereal grasses in the early phases of development have high humidity and belong to the group of hard-to-spread grasses. To obtain a benign silage from them, it is advisable in dry hot weather to silt the grass mixture to a moisture content of 70-75% before ensiling. This is especially important when you can not cook haylage, especially hay. It is recommended to add chemical preservatives to the fermented mass at the rate of: sodium pyrosulfite 4-5 kg ​​/ t, benzoic acid 3-4 kg / t, formic acid 4-5 l / t, propionic acid 4-5 l / t or acetic acid 5 l / t. Preservatives can be added to all types of silage mass, and 2-3% molasses dissolved in 3-5 times the amount of water can be added to difficult-to-grow cultures. These crops are recommended to be silage mixed with corn, sunflower, and other lightly sown crops that contain excessive amounts of easily refined sugars and little protein. Therefore, for the enrichment of silage with nitrogen, you can use urea at the rate of 4-5 kg ​​/ t (2.3 kg of nitrogen), one- and two-substituted ammonium phosphate and sodium (1.2-2.2 kg / t), sodium sulphate and ammonium ( 4-5 kg ​​/ t).

Chemical preservatives, introduced into the fermenting mass with a moisture content of up to 75%, must be dissolved in water in a 1: 3 ratio. When ensiling corn and other raw materials with a moisture content of more than 80%, it is impractical to introduce chemical preservatives.


Any kind of agricultural feed can be stored in polymer hoses. The siloing process starts right after the sleeve is filled, while the pH value decreases rapidly, which allows you to keep the quality of feed at a high level. Losses in this case are obtained at the level of 3%, rarely reaching 5%.

Siloing has a very large impact on improving the production efficiency of the feed ration and, last but not least, on the profitability of milk production. The result is the greatest savings compared to storing silage in silo pits. Production costs are fully paid off by maintaining the quality of feed. Forage grain, corn, corn and sorghum silage, one-year-old and perennial beet pulp, alfalfa, etc. are harvested in plastic bags.

Optimal canning conditions and low nutrient losses are achieved due to the immediate cessation of air access (cold fermentation), proper compaction of the silage mass, no loss of silage in the surface and extreme layers of the silage mass, absorption of silage juice in the sleeve, reduction of nutrient losses, which is possible with re-fermentation. Preserving silage in polymer hoses is the most favorable method for preventing oxygen from entering the feed.

The ensiling process is as follows:

Feed material with the help of carriers of green mass is delivered to the silage press and is unloaded on the backfill table. The submerged mass on the conveyor belt is fed to the compacting rotor. The rotor compresses the feed material and lays it in a polymer sleeve. At the same time the silage mass is compacted.

After the bag is fully packed, it is immediately sealed.

Fresh, high-quality feed is extracted as needed throughout the year.

The main advantages of this system are:

  • low capital costs in the production of 1 ton of silage and the absence of risks
  • there is no need for long-term investments in the construction of capital structures (such as silo trenches),
  • high performance and reliability of silage presses,
  • flexibility to use
  • effective fermentation and low loss.

To this we should add an adapted and successfully working in Russia model, as well as the availability of service and spare parts in our country. This is the best option for ensiling sugar beet pulp and grain of high humidity.

Silo storage and storage

In order for the cattle to be well fed and did not drastically reduce their productivity during the winter period, it is necessary to take care of sufficient preparation of feed in advance. An important component of the diet of animals are juicy food, that is, those that contain large amounts of water. In order for them to be as nutritious and beneficial as possible, it is necessary to adhere to the technology of their preparation and storage. In this article we will talk about the preparation of the most valuable winter feed - silage.

What is ensiling

In order to engage in proper preparation of the silo, it is necessary to understand that this is such a juicy feed for livestock animals, which is obtained by preserving (fermenting) freshly mown or dried green parts of forage plants (tops, leaves, stems). Nutritionally silage is similar to green fodder. Suitable for feeding all types of farm animals. Especially useful for large horned, pigs, geese, sheep, rabbits.

The process of leaven, or ensiling, is carried out in special structures (trenches, pits, towers, etc.). There, the greens are preserved under anaerobic conditions with the help of organic acids, secreted for the most part as a result of lactic acid fermentation. Also for the preservation can be added chemical preservatives, dietary supplements, accelerating the ensiling process.

Food prepared by this method is stored in a silo storage or packaged in blocks. In modern conditions, the preparation of silage is less time consuming compared to the harvesting of hay. It can be prepared in a short time, no need to pre-prepare for feeding. It does not require large investments. In addition, this method allows you to achieve less loss of nutrients. So, during ensiling, up to 10-15% of useful elements are lost, while harvesting hay - 30%.

Silage contains the amount of carotene and vitamin C that animals need, as well as water and fiber. It contributes to the better functioning of the digestive tract of livestock, contributes to the assimilation of roughage by them.

Main silage crops

For the preparation of silage used many cultures. They are divided into three groups:

  • lightweight
  • hard-to-wear
  • unbreakable in pure form.
Green corn, sunflower, cabbage, rape, beet, sorghum, carrot tops, cereal grains, legume-cereal mixtures are considered to be the first group.

Clover, sedge, clover, alfalfa are difficult to enslave. Tomatoes and potatoes tops, cucumbers, zucchini, melons, pumpkins, soybeans are not suitable for ensiling in pure form. Plants from the last group are harvested only in mixtures with easily fertilized or with the addition of preservatives and starters.

As a raw material for silage, tops of garden crops, cabbage leaves, mixtures of legumes and cereals, grass growing on pastures, root crops are suitable. For silage use and protein-rich food waste (pulp, bard, pulp).

Optimum mowing phase

One of the factors affecting the nutritional value of silage is the mowing season of the crop for silage. Each plant has the most favorable phase of development for use in silage feed.

So, for harvesting silage corn plants cleaned in the stage of milky-wax ripeness of grain. It is then that corn is easily ensiled and can lose only 10% of its nutritional properties when harvested. In the same phase sorghum is mown.

The best time to collect sunflower will be the time when the plant has 30% open inflorescences. If you miss this moment, then the content of fiber in the sunflower will increase, and animals eat such food with less hunting.

Silage annual leguminous crops are harvested in the milky-waxy maturity phase of grains in the lower third, leguminous annuals - during the budding period.

The aft silage lupine is mown when the grains are formed. Clover is well ensiled during the flowering period, cereals - at the beginning of earing.

How to prepare a silo: silage preparation technology

The technology of silage preparation includes several stages:

  • silage harvesting,
  • grinding of raw materials
  • stowage in storage
  • compaction of green mass
  • airtight shelter silage material.
There are several prerequisites for silage harvesting:
  • The silage mass should have an optimum humidity of 65-75%, but not higher. With excessive moisture, add chaff, chaff, chopped straw (15-20 kg / 100 kg of feed). If the moisture level is insufficient, zucchini, pumpkin, and water are introduced.
  • Also in the green mass must contain the necessary amount of sugars.
  • The air from the raw material should be maximally forced out by good compaction.
  • The tank, pit, trench or room where the silo was laid should be hermetically sealed to prevent oxygen and water from entering it.
Consider in detail how to make silage at home.

After harvesting plants for ensiling, they must be crushed. The average length of chopped herbs should be 3-4 cm.

To lay the silo, it is necessary to dig a hole about 2 m deep. The width and length of the recess do not matter. It can even be round. The walls of the pit should expand upwards. They need to be smeared with clay. The bottom can be covered with fallen leaves or straw.

Next, in a hole in layers of 20-25 cm stack green mass, tightly tamping it, especially near the walls. (Layers of green mass can be alternated with layers of chopped straw 40-50 cm in height.) Every day the mass is filled to 80-100 cm.

The recess is filled with the top - within a few days its contents will settle. The denser the tab, the better the silage will be. At the same time, herbs with normal humidity are tamped as best as possible, and with high humidity they are subjected to moderate tamping. The temperature inside the mass should not exceed 38 degrees.

With proper ensiling, the feed will be ready for feeding in 1-1.5 months. Slow-growing plants can be used earlier - in 15-20 days. The legume silo will need 1.5-2 months for the starter.

There is a way to do without the construction of buildings and shelters. You can use the method of silage in polymer hoses. In this case, the preservation process begins immediately after laying the green mass in the sleeve. Losses with this method range from 3 to 5%. High-quality feed can be removed from the sleeve as needed throughout the year.

When harvesting a small amount of feed, you can use a barrel.

Silo storage

The surface of the stored silo should be flat and smooth. The main conditions for proper preservation will be the maintenance of the required temperature and integrity of the encapsulation.

To take the required amount of feed, the covering materials slightly raise. The open surface should be as small as possible. Then the pit is again covered with foil and sprinkled with straw or earth.

After being removed from the silo store, the feed is only suitable for one feeding, since it quickly loses its nutrients in the air.

When the whole silo will be used, the pit will need to be cleaned of residues and treated with a solution of freshlylive lime.

Silos and preservatives

In order to preserve the largest possible amount of nutrients, when preparing silage resorted to the use of chemical preservatives. This method is used for ensiling sluggish and non-silage crops or green mass with a high degree of moisture. Действие консервантов обуславливается их способностью регулировать жизнедеятельность микроорганизмов: развитие гнилостных, плесневых – подавлять, молочнокислых и дрожжевых – ограничивать.

На сегодняшний день выбор консервантов для приготовления силоса огромен – разработано около 2,5 тысячи химических соединений. Хорошими консервирующими свойствами обладают пиросульфит и бисульфит натрия, пиросульфат и дигидросульфат аммония, формалин и др. Ими опрыскивают силосную массу. When choosing an additive, preference should be given to those that do not contain poisons and carcinogens.

Also, when laying the silage, mineral acids (formic, sorbic, lactic, propionic, acetic) are introduced or their mixture with salts. They are made in several layers in 20-25 cm.

When ensiling grass, corn with legumes, you can add a special starter, containing lactic acid bacteria.

Thus, the quality of the silo will depend on several factors: the type of plants used, the phase of their harvesting, their moisture, the density of laying and sealing the silo. High-quality food can be identified by color - it will be from yellow-green to dark brown, and a pleasant smell - sauerkraut, pickled apples, baked bread (depending on the composition). If the silo has a different flavor, for example, manure or ammonia, its use is unacceptable.

Procurement objectives

Silage is recommended to be given as the main or additional feed for such agricultural animals:

It is used as a succulent feed for feeding poultry: chickens, geese, ducks and others.

In some animals, such as rabbits, an abundance of succulent feed can lead to illness. This should be taken into account in the preparation of the diet.

The use of silage feed has significant advantages:

  • cost reduction in feed production,
  • small amount of waste
  • creating an effective fermentation.

The advantages of silage feed include the ability to choose the best method of harvesting. To do this, apply:

  • silos,
  • trenches (burta),
  • polymer sleeve.

Recently, the use of special polymer hoses has become increasingly popular. This method eliminates the need for complex storage and completely prevents the ingress of oxygen into the finished feed.

Storage rules

For proper storage of silage in trenches, it is important to observe the following recommendations:

  • capacity for loading is selected based on the initial volume of green mass,
  • silage mass loading time in trenches should not exceed 4 days,
  • after tamping, the silage mass is immediately tightly covered with plastic wrap, and then with a layer of earth,
  • the external surface is arranged in such a way that the sediments do not linger on it.

Avoiding all these problems will help preservation of silage feed in polymer hoses.

For more details on silo harvesting technology, see the video.


Silo is a type of canned succulent feed. Siloing is suitable for harvesting maize, perennial grasses, legumes, cereals and vegetable waste. This kind of succulent feed is used for feeding herbivorous animals of all species and poultry. The two most popular methods are the most popular: in trenches and using polymer hoses.

When ensiling, the right choice of plant crops is of particular importance. The quality of the finished silo directly depends on the correct cutting time. Also important is the temperature at which canning of food occurs.

The concept of silage as feed

In the diet of ruminants, the proportion of this ingredient may exceed half the recipe. Silo is classified as a succulent feed. It is a fairly inexpensive type of food. Contains 75-80% water, as well as mineral and organic matter. Food is characterized by a fairly high value for animals. On their body has a milking and restorative properties.

Losses with proper harvesting of silage do not exceed 10% in nutritional value, and they are practically not observed in protein.

The need for silage for animals

This feed stimulates the appetite of ruminants and other animal species. When using silage, they improve their digestion, partially compensating for the missing elements and vitamins.

Farmers engaged in breeding cattle often have a question: “What is to feed a cow?” Silo-based feed, compared to the green mass of crops from which it is prepared, has almost the same ratio of raw materials: fiber, fat, protein, and carotene and minerals. This reduces the sugar content, up to 90% of which goes to the formation of lactic and other organic acids, easily digestible by animals and not significantly inferior to simple sugars. Thus, silage should be one of the main types of feed for cows, especially in the winter stall period. The digestibility of the main nutrients in this feed is somewhat reduced compared to fresh grass, but this reduction is almost imperceptible if technology is observed.

Silage technology in rolls

The modern technology of siloing immediately into rolls involves the molding of small rolls from the dried green mass, which are then compacted by a baler and pressed into rolls. Within 3-4 hours after this rolls must be delivered to the place of packing and / or subsequent storage. Using agro-stretch and, if necessary, senovyazalny twine (to give additional strength and roll formation), the silo is hermetically packed. Then it goes through the standard fermentation processes, as a result of which the feed is ensiled, retaining almost completely the nutritional value of the feedstock.

  • The independence of the harvesting process from climatic conditions. At any time, the harvesting can be suspended until the onset of favorable weather,
  • No need for special storage. Silo packaged in agrostreich can be placed on any suitable size and quality grounds - meadows, harvested fields, roadsides,
  • The minimum labor costs for the workpiece, due to the high mechanization of the process,
  • High initial nutritional value of wet food and preservation of these characteristics even during prolonged storage. When using stretch film for haylage “Piippo Stretch” nutrient loss is no more than 6-8% per year,
  • Guaranteed shelf life of silage in rolls when using Piippo Stretch agro-stretch film is 2 years,
  • Convenience of transportation and storage of silage in rolls.

In addition to the operational advantages that an agricultural enterprise gets when using this technology of harvesting, it also has a face and economic benefit. Firstly, by simplifying the process, time is saved and there is no need for the costs of building complex silos: pits, trenches, elevators, etc. Secondly, due to the almost complete mechanization of the procurement process, the cost of feed is reduced by 10-20% - depending on the volume of production and the equipment used. Thirdly, silage in rolls is excellent for sale, as it is easy to meter, transport and store.

Where to buy a stretch film for haylage

You can select and order an agrostrech film for silage feed using a new technology in the manufacturer’s catalog, which is one of the leading European manufacturers and suppliers of packaging materials for the agricultural sector.

To buy twine or net for baling hay, film for silage or hay agro stretch, you can call the indicated phones or leave a request for a callback.


Silo - canned juicy food. Among the blanks for feeding animals in the winter, it occupies an important place.

The main crops used to make silage are green maize, sorghum, sunflower, and mixtures of these crops with legume – cereal grasses.

Silo is also prepared from annual pea-cereal, perennial grass grasses and vegetable waste.

Organic acids accumulate in the green silage mass due to bacterial digestion of sugars.

When following the ensiling technology, total nutrient losses do not exceed 12–15%.

According to the silability (by sugars security) the plants are divided into three groups:

  1. easily syringed - vikoasya mixture in the flowering phase, peas before flowering, red clover in the flowering phase, corn, sunflower, winter rape, oats, etc.,
  2. difficult to consolidate - vetch, sweet clover, lupine at the beginning of flowering, alfalfa in the phase of milky ripeness, quinoa, etc.,
  3. non-slanted plants - tomato tops, nettle, mint, wormwood, etc.

It should also be noted that the silage from crushed plants is always better in quality, although it is slightly more acidic than that prepared from whole plants.

The amount of cutting depends on the moisture content of the mass during storage.

Silage. Technology of preparation of high-nutritional feed

If the humidity is 65% and lower, the particle length should be 2–3 cm, at a humidity of 70–75% - 4–5 cm, at a humidity of 80% - 8–10 cm.

The optimum moisture content of the silage mass is 65–75%. At the same time, lactic acids accumulate in a mass of from 2/3 to 4/5 of the amount of formed organic acids.

From the wetter mass, more juice is released. The substances dissolved in the juice neutralize lactic acid, which leads to disruption of fermentation processes, and a significant amount of acetic acid is formed, which reduces the nutritional value of the silage. It is possible to regulate the moisture and the silage of raw materials using the following technological methods:

  • wilting silage raw materials,
  • ensiling wet raw materials with dry ingredients
  • mixed crops of silage crops with grain and leguminous crops.

Important is the time of harvesting silage crops.

Thus, in most areas of the country, the optimal time for harvesting corn for silage is the phase of the wax ripeness of the grain. In arid areas where the corn harvest is small, it is better to plant sorghum in clean crops or mixed with corn. Sorghum mowed at the time of hardening of the grain. Sunflower harvested at the beginning of flowering (blooms 15-20% of the plants).

If necessary, the use of non-silting, difficult-to-grow plants, as well as to reduce the loss of nutrients in the ensiling of cereals, you can use chemical preservatives.

per 1 ton of plants

The first three preservatives are liquid.

Before making them diluted with water in a ratio of 1: 3 or 1: 4. Benzoic acid and sodium pyrosulfite - powders.

When making preservatives should observe safety: work should be in rubber boots, gloves, protective aprons, use respirators or gas masks. In case of acid contact with skin, it should be quickly washed off with plenty of soap and water. Make preparations should be on the leeward side.

The juice released during the ensiling of green mass cannot be given to animals.

Silos can be of various designs - trench type, circular section, etc., but all of them must meet the following requirements: the walls and the bottom should be made water- and air-tight, groundwater or wastewater should not penetrate into it.

Loading of the silo should start with the laying of 40–50 cm of chopped straw to the bottom of the storage, then load 30–40 cm of green mass and again straw with the same layer.

Each layer of straw and green mass must be mixed and compacted, while making preservatives. Every day after laying the mass must be compacted for at least 3-4 hours, especially at the walls of the vault. The system of loading mass transport for the preparation of silage is similar to the tab haylage.

If a mass with excessive moisture content (80% and above) is siloed without adding straw, then compaction should be carried out moderately during the laying process, without additional compaction, as this will lead to loss of nutritional value of the silage due to juice flow.

Storage capacity should be selected taking into account the possibility of its loading, but not more than 4 days.

After the storage is loaded, it is immediately tightened with plastic wrap and covered with a layer of earth or peat up to 10 cm thick. The surface of the coating must be made so that the precipitation does not linger in the grooves and does not penetrate into the mass. The edges of the film along the walls of the store should be carefully sealed with a strip of 25–30 cm wide and about 15 cm thick.

For shelter storage the most suitable polyethylene soot-stabilized film STU 138–67 with a width of 8 and 12 m.

Narrow films (3–4 m wide) must be fastened (glued together) into canopies.


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Silo preparation and storage technology

Silo - canned juicy food. Among the blanks for feeding animals in the winter, it occupies an important place.

The main crops used to make silage are green maize, sorghum, sunflower, and mixtures of these crops with legume – cereal grasses.

Silo is also prepared from annual pea-cereal, perennial grass grasses and vegetable waste.

Organic acids accumulate in the green silage mass due to bacterial digestion of sugars. When following the ensiling technology, total nutrient losses do not exceed 12–15%.

According to the silability (by sugars security) the plants are divided into three groups:

easily syringed - vikoasya mixture in the flowering phase, peas before flowering, red clover in the flowering phase, corn, sunflower, winter rape, oats, etc.,

2. difficult to consolidate - vetch, sweet clover, lupine at the beginning of flowering, alfalfa in the phase of milky ripeness, quinoa, etc.

3. non-sticking plants - tomato tops, nettle, mint, wormwood, etc.

It should also be noted that the silage from crushed plants is always better in quality, although it is slightly more acidic than that prepared from whole plants.

The amount of cutting depends on the moisture content of the mass during storage. If the humidity is 65% and lower, the particle length should be 2–3 cm, at a humidity of 70–75% - 4–5 cm, at a humidity of 80% - 8–10 cm.

The optimum moisture content of the silage mass is 65–75%. At the same time, lactic acids accumulate in a mass of from 2/3 to 4/5 of the amount of formed organic acids.

From the wetter mass, more juice is released.

Science silage

This feed fits into the silo facilities tightly, without air access. Various biochemical processes take place in it that contribute to the accumulation of organic acids, mainly lactic, with a preservative effect, which protects the phytomass from damage and decomposition. Surplus of lactic acid is as harmful as its deficiency, therefore it is necessary to maintain its optimal amount.

Silage is usually stored on cattle farms. When phytomass is placed in special trenches, respiration and fermentation begin to occur, causing a rise in temperature. In the process of respiration with the residual amount of oxygen in the silo, the phytomass is heated and loses some nutrients and substances. Also in the silo are various microorganisms. It is desirable that the lactic microflora predominate, since acetic acid and oily bacteria worsen the quality of the feed.

With the access of air, the development of aerobic microbes, including molds, is possible. The ensiling process proceeds to a pH level of 4.2. During this time, accumulate some mass fraction of sugar, which is called the sugar minimum.

Classification of plants on fertility

According to the ratio of the sugar minimum and the actual mass fraction of the substance, the entire flora is divided into easily, difficult to compose and non-clogging.

The most common plant in the non-chernozem zone of our country for this process is maize for silage, which belongs to the lightly-silage plants. Also in this group include oats, sorghum, grass-bean grass mixtures, tops of root crops, cabbage.

For leguminous crops are leguminous crops, if they are ensiled in a pure form. This is due to the fact that the mass fraction of sugars in them does not fully ensure the minimum discussed above.

Plants and their parts, such as potato tops, alfalfa in budding, vegetables of the family of nightshade, nettles and other weeds are not silted at all.

The mass fraction of sugar and the minimum formed by this substance depend on the phenophase of development, the time of harvesting, the norms of applied fertilizers and other factors. The green mass at the time of harvesting the silage should, with the moisture that is typical for it, contain about 1.5% or more sugars.

The effect of moisture silage plants on the process and the quality of food

With a high mass fraction of moisture in the prepared raw material, sugar is diluted; with low moisture, a large amount of air gets there, leading to the development of mold fungi. The optimum for this indicator is the range of 65-75%. The more moisture, the greater the loss of nutrients will be observed, less lactic acid will be formed, and as a result there will be mainly non-lactic fermentation. To prevent this, on a cattle farm, it is necessary to monitor the moisture content of the plants, which are usually grown on the fields of this farm.

If a part of the raw material with high humidity comes in, it should be dried with dry herbs or worn away and vice versa.

Improper fermentation leads to the accumulation of excess amounts of acetic, butyric acids and ammonia, which leads to the appearance of an acidic smell and taste, as a result of which the palatability of this feed for cows decreases.

The effect of grinding on feed quality

До укладки растений в специально предназначенные для силосования траншеи их необходимо измельчить. Размер частиц зависит от влажности сырья. При достижении последней величины в 65% резка должна достигать 2-3 см, при большей влажности — 4-5 см. Сырье с большей влажностью нуждается в более крупной резке, так как при ней выделяется меньше сока с минимальной потерей питательных веществ. If the grass itself is small, and even high-moisture, then it is better not to grind at all.

When meeting in the process of harvesting silage difficult-to-compacted parts of plants or coarse stems, they are ground to a size not exceeding 2 cm.

Regulation of microbiological processes in the feed

What is a silo, we have already figured out. It was stated above that the quality of this feed is largely determined by the microbiological processes occurring in it. If there is little sugar in the bulk for ensiling, then it is necessary to add molasses diluted in water 1: 3 in an amount up to 2%, grain debris or root-crops in an amount of 2-3%, apply chemical preservatives and starter cultures from lactic acid bacteria. The latter, as a rule, are used in ensiling legumes. If the raw material has a high humidity, it makes no sense to add chemical preservatives.

Thus, the question: “How to feed a cow?” Is relevant for the farmer. With an unregulated microbiological regime, it is possible to obtain such a mass that will have an increased content of acetic, butyric acids, mold and other pathogenic microorganisms, as a result of which you can get a whole bunch of diseases from an animal while feeding such food.

Silo Requirements

At the beginning of the article, we considered the question: “What is silage?” It was determined that these concepts refer not only to feed, but also to the storage of such feed. The preparation and preservation of the silo is carried out in specially adapted places. Storage facilities for this type of feed should provide reliable protection against air penetration. They must have sufficient depth to ensure that the mass subjected to the ensiling process falls below its own weight, which will facilitate its release from the air. The walls in the storehouses should be steep and smooth, the corners should be rounded, which ensures a uniform sedimentation of the silo, as a result of which the formation of voids will not be observed. In case of using ground-based silage storage devices, the latter must be strong so that the silage mass does not break them, acid-resistant and protects the food from freezing.

The choice of one or another store depends on how the farmer answers the question: “What is a silo?”, Does he approach it responsibly or only to support the vital activity of animals. It is made depending on the size of the pledged mass for 1-4 days.

Choice of silo type

Underground trenches are made to a depth of 2.5-3.5 m in clayey soil, the walls are inclined to the bottom, the width is from 9 m, and the length is not more than 30 m. Groundwater should be low, and the upper level should not reach trench bottom at least half a meter.

Repositories located above ground can be arranged regardless of the above indicator. The walls of such trenches are wooden, reinforced concrete or prefabricated. They are located parallel to each other with a width between them from 6 to 15 m, a height of 2.3-3 m and a length of up to 30-40 m. The foundation is cobbled or concreted.

If the volume of silage preparation is small, then it is stored in pits, which are made in dense soil, while the area should be dry and elevated, the ground water level is low.

The capacity of silos is calculated based on the pledged raw materials. So, when laying grass grasses, the mass of a cubic meter is about 700 kg, and when laying grass-bean grass mixtures - about 500 kg.

Silage rammer

Feed for cows, as for other types of farm animals, must be of high quality. This can be achieved with proper compaction of the silage mass. Raw materials that have a better tamper, quickly removes residual air in it, which creates favorable conditions for the flow of lactic fermentation.

After the mass intended for laying in storage is crushed, it is laid with a layer thickness of 30-40 cm across the entire width of the trench, after which all layers are tamped. A good seal should be in the corners and near the side walls, since there is a danger of air gaps.

If overmoistened raw materials are ensiled, it is impossible to carry out enhanced tamping, as this will contribute to additional nutrient loss.

This operation is usually carried out with heavy tractors.

Silo shelter

After ramming the store should be hermetically sealed to prevent air from entering. This operation is carried out immediately after the previous one. The more overdue shelter, the greater the loss of nutrients will be observed. In ground storage, this operation is carried out by closing the loading hatches.

For shelter underground storage mainly use a film with a thickness of 100 microns. The towers use only plastic wrap. From above it is covered with sawdust, peat or unused green mass.

Depending on the length and width of the storage, the film is glued together so that it protrudes beyond the boundaries of the trenches.

The store begins to cover from the lee end, the edge of the film sprinkled with soil. If straw is used as a covering material, then lime must also be used, since rodents will damage the straw along with the film.

Timing of laying the ferry raw materials

It should be laid in the shortest possible time. In large storage facilities, stacking is carried out in a maximum of 4 days, in small ones (up to 500 tons) - 2 days. Shelter must be completed within the day after laying.

The longer these periods will be tightened, the more the pledged mass will warm up, and large nutrient losses will be observed, which will lead to a darkening of the silo.


In this article, it was considered that such a silo. As a result, it was determined that it is not only food for various animals, mainly for cattle, but also trenches in which it is stored. Laying the silo in storage should be based on various factors, for a short period of time with mandatory tamping and shelter storage to prevent air ingress and loss of nutrients.