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Silage making process

Silage making process



  • Select DuPont Pioneer recommended Silage Hybrid as per the geography and season
  • Silage hybrids require higher Plant population - 10-15% over grain hybrids, so adhere to the suggested spacing


Key management practices at the critical growth stages:

  • Emergence stage – Weed management, Fertilizer, Life Irrigation
  • Knee High stage – Weed management, Irrigation, Pest and Disease management
  • Flowering stage – Irrigation
  • Grain development stage - Irrigation


  • Plan in advance for harvest:
    • Get the bunker ready
    • Arrange equipment for Harvesting, chopping, compacting and packing
  • Take all the Safety precautions with appropriate PPE
  • Harvest the crop 6 inches above the ground at ½ Milk line stage (65-70% moisture)
  • Silage Chop Management - Chop the whole plant with cob
    • Chop Length (6mm-15mm) – see that chop size of cob also as per specification
    • Harvesting/Chopping/Bunker filling have to happen on the same day


  • Store the chopped material under strict anaerobic conditions
  • Be careful of pack tractors if near the bunker during filling
  • Pack in thin layers of less than 6 inches with a 30 degree slope
  • Ideal Pack density more than 20Kg per cubic feet
  • Apply inoculant as per the layers
  • Pack, pack, and pack to remove air and better compaction
  • Cover with heavy grade plastic less than 8 mm and  seal to keep away air and moisture penetrating into the bunker
  • Plastic should be weighted down with old tires or mud to keep the plastic tightly secured in direct contact with the silage mass


  • Silage will be ready to feed after 45 - 60 days
  • Good Silage is brownish in color and has vinegar like smell
  • Average Daily Silage requirement varies from 20-30 Kg/animal, depending on the weight and Milching Status of cattle.
  • It is recommended to feed the silage round the year for consistent nutrient supply.
  • Open the bunker from front face & remove the silage like a cake from top to bottom along the face
  • Remove visible moldy crust from the bunker surface, do not allow loose silage to lie in front of the bunker
  • Feed off minimum 4-6 inches across the entire face daily and keep the face clean to avoid spoilage
  • Keep it covered air tight with weight when not in use
Last Modified:January 8, 2016