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Author Topic: improving grazing for sheep mkII  (Read 4077 times)

countrygirlatheart

  • Joined Apr 2008
improving grazing for sheep mkII
« on: July 05, 2009, 08:11:47 pm »
Having overseeded the paddock some weeks ago and having had some showery weather recently I now see the 'baby' grass emerging among the existing grass which is great.  However, there is now also a covering of tall, thin grass with seedheads (about 25% cover -the legacy of previous use of the field for haylage?).  I think the straggly grass is ryegrass/ a smattering of timothy and something that looks like it might be meadowgrass?)  The sheep have grazed the field throughout and will remain on the field until September/October.  The underlying grass is improving but is not very tall (yet)

The latest dilemma is .......  do I top this straggly tall grass and if so, will doing this (local farmer with tractor) damage the 'baby' grass coming through? will the cut grass lessen the light getting to the baby grass?  or ....... do I just leave it on the basis that when it sets seed it is extra seed to fill in any remaining bare bits?

Any views?

thanks
Voss Electric Fence

MrRee

  • Joined Jan 2008
Re: improving grazing for sheep mkII
« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2009, 10:05:47 pm »
I'd be tempted to leave the topping-off for a while. Unless you're going to rake it all up,it could cover the new seedlings coming through and kill 'em off,that's if they survive a couple of ton rolling over them too. If you let the older grass set seed,it'll spread naturally and hopefully sprout soon too. My field's pretty much the same and I have left the old seed heads on,but I do go out every evening for an hour with a scycle to keep the thistles down...Ree
They don’t join cliques — more times than not, they stand alone — but they recognize and gravitate towards one another. Only warriors understand other warriors.

countrygirlatheart

  • Joined Apr 2008
Re: improving grazing for sheep mkII
« Reply #2 on: July 06, 2009, 06:45:06 pm »
thanks Mr Ree

I think youre right, that sounds logical to me.  I can use the money I save not topping it to go towards doing a soil test and liming it if necessary.  I'm told that liquid seaweed would be good as a more eco friendly alternative (I think that was Rosemary) instead of lime.

On a separate note - the field was overseeded with a mix of grass seed and white clover but there is no sign of the white clover.  Could this be because the soil is too acid?  or just that the seed did lie dry for a couple of weeks before it rained.

thanks again

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: improving grazing for sheep mkII
« Reply #3 on: July 06, 2009, 09:34:51 pm »
Calcified seaweed - it comes in a powder form.

woollyval

  • Joined Feb 2008
  • Near Bodmin, Cornwall
    • Val Grainger
Re: improving grazing for sheep mkII
« Reply #4 on: July 06, 2009, 10:47:20 pm »
Just sit back and leave it alone.....and top at the end of septembet if you really have to.....or better still put some sheep across it lightly in September..... :)
www.smallholdinginsomerset.blogspot.com
www.valgrainger.co.uk

Overall winner of the Devon Environmental Business Awards 2009

countrygirlatheart

  • Joined Apr 2008
Re: improving grazing for sheep mkII
« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2009, 06:05:44 pm »
thanks woolly                         oops, sorry Rosemary, I must have read somewhere else about liquid stuff

Tullywood Farm

  • Guest
Re: improving grazing for sheep mkII
« Reply #6 on: July 09, 2009, 10:53:10 pm »
I spread a 25kg bag of white clover seed over my fields last year and was very disappointed as very little of my fields showed any sign of clover BUT this year is a different story I have loads of clover in all my fields so all I can say is just wait and see.
Has anyone else come across this as I would love to know as the person who sold me it told me I would see clover in Just a few weeks.
I also wish that I had used mixed clover seed not that it doesn't look nice just different colours would have been nice.
Hope this helps
Kind regards
Joe

hexhammeasure

  • Joined Jun 2008
    • golocal food
    • Facebook
Re: improving grazing for sheep mkII
« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2009, 08:40:10 am »
as with all seeds it depends on weather soil temperature and water. seeds are miraculous things and if not kept too wet will wait for the right moment to germinate. some hardy perennials also need a bit frost to kick start.
Ian

countrygirlatheart

  • Joined Apr 2008
Re: improving grazing for sheep mkII
« Reply #8 on: July 10, 2009, 08:36:59 pm »
Joe - that's good to know.  I was going to fling some clover seed around in the autumn if nothing appeared but might just leave it until next spring.

Ian - that's interesting too.  There was a hot dry spell after the overseeding was done and someone told me that it would probably have dried out but some seems to have come through several weeks later after a good dose of rain

thanks again

Tullywood Farm

  • Guest
Re: improving grazing for sheep mkII
« Reply #9 on: July 10, 2009, 10:47:47 pm »
Hi Ian,
Thanks for that I was just wondering why?.
As I have said I have tons in my fields now but this might help other people in the future.  :)
Kind regards
Joe

 

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