out in our part of the country, it's nothing but beautiful pastures with cows and horses peacefully grazing. pastoral beauty at its finest. we bought 4 rolls of old hay from the farmer up the way and were so excited to have so much good mulch for our expanded garden this year. we piled it on,with visions of happy plants and less weeding. after we got it all on, i noticed some flowers and vegetables has weird,pale,ferny looking new growth. i had the county extension agent out and got the scary diagnoses - herbicides! turns out, those green pastures are mostly all sprayed with herbicides to kill weeds that make cows and horses sick, thus saving farmers much needed time and money. trouble is, the herbicides persist in the hay and in the cow manure of cows that eat it for up to 3-4 years,causing stunted growth and cupped and ferny leaves. the hay we got is 2-3 years old, and still toxic. so - if you get hay or cow manure from a farmer, first find out what, if any herbicides were sprayed on it! here's some pics of normal and affected black eyed susan tops, and a pic of cupped sunflower leaves and messed up cosmos. we got all the mulch off, but have had to replant some things that were too messed up.