Spring pasture tips
• Feed should have been saved for stock moving towards peak lactation.
• Get down and have a close look at your ‘pasture’. There should be plenty of grass species (especially ryegrass) and clover, but there will also be weeds and bare ground. Plan to manage the weeds before they get big, and to resow bare areas.
• As soils will still be wet, large stock like cattle can do a lot of pugging damage. Plan for a special stand-off area covered in bark where they can be fed hay and silage in racks.
• Don’t graze down to soil level, as leaving a good ‘pasture residual’ hastens regrowth.
• Ensure electric fences are giving full power to avoid breakouts and pasture damage.
• Use a back fence and mobile water troughs to keep stock off grazed areas so you avoid damage to soil and pasture regrowth.
• Use a small N fertiliser application (25kgn/ha) for a pasture boost, but avoid drains and streams when spreading.
• Have a management plan for when pasture really takes off and will need controlling.
• Fence off all drains and streams to keep stock (especially cattle) out of waterways on your property, and plant riparian strips along the sides. If your stream water is dirty, find out why and get help to fix the problem from the appropriate authority.