How to Grow Timothy Grass Hay


Timothy hay is choice hay for farmers because it provides fiber and is high in nutrients for livestock animals. It is a cool-season grass that tolerates the winter well. Timothy hay produces roots in the fall and spring, some of which are shed in the winter months. It prefers a sandy loam-based soil that is well-drained and a full sun location.

Step 1

Choose a location with well-drained sandy loam soil with adequate sun exposure. Remove unwanted vegetation in the fall prior to spring planting. Spray the entire area with an herbicide and till the area with the rotary tiller to remove unwanted weeds and grasses. Apply a fertilizer rich in potassium and phosphorus to the area, following the label directions.

Step 2

Turn the soil with a rotary tiller in the late winter or early spring for planting. Reapply the fertilizer to the soil, working it into the dirt with the rotary tiller.

Step 3

Apply the Timothy grass seed. Fill a spreader with 8 to 12 lbs. of seed per acre. Spread the seed in paths across the area until the entire surface has been covered.

Step 4

Water the area generously until the soil is moist. Continue watering through the spring, preventing dry soil.

Step 5

Cut the hay after the first flower, leaving a grass base of 6 inches. The first cutting of Timothy hay is the most nutrient-rich.

Things You'll Need

  • Herbicide
  • Fertilizer
  • Rotary tiller
  • Spreader attachment for tractor.


  • Michigan State University: Grass Planting
  • Herbal Hay: Grow Your Own Hay
  • Washington State University: Timothy Hay
  • Ohio State University Extension: Timothy
Keywords: Timothy hay, timothy grass, grow timothy hay

About this Author

Christina Wheeler has been a professional freelance writer since 2007. She lends her expertise in animal care, gardening and home improvement to online publications such as Garden Guides and eHow. Wheeler studied business management at Ohio University.