Grown Here at Home: The difference between round and square hay bales is more than just the shape

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PULASKI CO., Va. (WDBJ7) Nowadays a lot of farmers use round bales of hay. They’re huge.
Some of them can weigh over a thousand pounds. One of the perks is they take less time to dry between cutting the hay and baling it. Usually larger farming operations will go this route.

So when you come across a farmer like Mack who still uses the square bales, just know he's putting in some extra work. Square bales take several days to produce from start to finish. After the hay is cut, it's spread out so it can cure.

“It needs warmth from the air and the sunshine to make it dry so that it won't mold when you put it into the bale,” said Mack Farmer.

This takes about two to three days

“After it's cut and the hay was cured I took the hay rake and I made what you call windrows,” Mack explained.

This makes things easier when it comes to baling the hay.

“Then I took the square baler here and this is the product we came out with a square bale like this right here. That's good for what we use for feeding horses and sheep and stuff,” Mack said.

Round bales, you can leave in the field, but square bales you can't. After all of that work baling, you've got to come back around with a tractor to pick them all up and stack them in a barn. That's the part that really gets your muscles working.