Pulling fields out of ro­ta­tion an op­tion with grass cover build-up

Irish Independent - Farming - - Front Page -

round bales of silage or close some pad­docks up for hay. We use quite a bit of hay at calv­ing time in Au­gust, and any time you can get a few ex­tra bales of hay is a bonus.

We are cur­rently clean­ing out all the sheds. While dis­in­fec­tion, es­pe­cially of the calv­ing ar­eas, is ex­tremely im­por­tant, I also think it’s im­por­tant to have them cleaned out for as long as pos­si­ble to let plenty of sun­light and air in around them. This also gives us a chance to do nec­es­sary re­pairs to gates, wa­ter troughs, etc.

All the calves have been treated for worms with Normectin pour-on in the past few weeks, al­though none of them were cough­ing. When you are look­ing for max­i­mum per­for­mance from young­stock, I al­ways feel that if you hear them cough­ing you are al­ready a week late in dos­ing. maize, in the open (not un­der plas­tic). This crop is fol­low­ing one of car­rots, which had been cov­ered with straw. We used two va­ri­eties, Justina and V43, which were rec­om­mended to us by our seed sup­plier. The field was ploughed and we in­cor­po­rated 5cwt of 20-0-15 into the seedbed.

The silage ground has been closed up for a few weeks at this stage and looks to be grow­ing well. All the silage ground was grazed in the spring. Af­ter graz­ing, we ap­plied an av­er­age of 2,500ga of well-di­luted slurry per acre. The con­di­tions at the time of spread­ing were as near to ideal as it could get – dull and over­cast, with a slight mist of rain at times and ex­cel­lent ground con­di­tions. We then ap­plied 3-3.75 cwt/ac of Cut Sward. The rates var­ied, de­pend­ing on the amount of slurry that went on in­di­vid­ual fields and also with ref­er­ence to our soil sam­ples.

We re­cently sprayed off a field with Roundup. We are plan­ning to clean up ex­ist­ing drains and put in some shores. We will then sub-soil it and re­seed it, us­ing a one-pass. Our plan is to make pad­docks out of this field.

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