About 250,000 acres of alfalfa hay were grown in Arizona in 2011, primarily in Maricopa, La Paz, Pinal, and Yuma counties. In California, the acreage was nearly five-fold higher - nearly 1.4 million acres centered in Kern, Imperial, San Joaquin, Siskiyou, and Fresno counties.
Extreme summer heat results in a summer slump in alfalfa growth in the Arizona and California low desert regions.
Alfalfa is nearly a year-round business in western low-desert growing areas.
Summer-grown alfalfa hay is primarily fed to dry cows, feedlot animals, and horses.
Hot temperatures help a wide variety of crops to grow, including alfalfa for hay.
Western Farm Press
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