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Author Topic: Yearly plan for grass land management  (Read 3782 times)

moprabbit

  • Joined Oct 2011
  • North Notts
Yearly plan for grass land management
« on: August 20, 2012, 09:53:46 am »
I have a couple of acres that I rent for my sheep. It is divided up into 2 plots that I rotate my sheep on. It is mixed grassland, with lots of thistles,  that gets very wet if we have a lot of rain and dries out very quickly in the summer. Up until this year the field had had nothing done to it. I had it chain harrowed early in the season, which removed a lot of moss, took a crop of hay off one part and have just had the other half topped. I just wondered what sort of things I should do with the field on a yearly basis to keep the grass growing as well as possible. I feel it ought to be fertilized sometime but know nothing about time of year  to do this/type of fertilizer to use and quantities. Any help would be gratefully accepted! Thank you
4 pet sheep

suziequeue

  • Joined Feb 2010
  • Llanidloes; Powys
Re: Yearly plan for grass land management
« Reply #1 on: August 20, 2012, 11:43:30 am »
Oooooh - I shall be watching this post with interest.


Nothing to add I' afraid except that I am in a similar boat to you mop rabbit.  :D :D
We do the best we can with the information we have

When we know better we do better

robert waddell

  • Guest
Re: Yearly plan for grass land management
« Reply #2 on: August 20, 2012, 12:25:38 pm »
how long are you renting the land for      and is it seasonal or long term
 
grassland management can differ if it is owned or rented
 
lime can improve the grass as can phosphate and potash     all combined makes the grass more palatable and cutting helps to encourage tillering of the grass even one hundredweight of 15/15/15 will improve late grazing   but you don't want grass growth when it is frosty  as you will get winter kill :farmer:

Factotum

  • Joined Jun 2012
Re: Yearly plan for grass land management
« Reply #3 on: August 20, 2012, 12:28:22 pm »
Hi

Before you go to the expense of buying fertiliser, you should get a soil analysis - from a few different parts of the land.

This will tell you the pH of the soil and give you an idea of the levels of the various important chemicals such as potassium (K) and phosphorus (P). Depending on the results you may need to increase the pH (by liming) and/or improve the K & P levels by adding the right sort of fertiliser.

If your pH is too low, adding fertiliser is a waste of time and money as it will not be properly utilised by the soil, so you should lime first and then add the fertiliser later.

We do this in the spring, before the grass starts to grow. Up here, we used Scotgrain Agriculture for the soil analysis, and then used them to buy the lime and arrange for the spreader - can't use an ordinary fertie spreader for lime. The fertie we get in 600kg sacks from a large commercial farmer friend - he buys in bulk for his own holding and is happy to add a few bags onto his order for us - much cheaper than buying elsewhere.

Hope this helps

Sue

moprabbit

  • Joined Oct 2011
  • North Notts
Re: Yearly plan for grass land management
« Reply #4 on: August 22, 2012, 10:56:12 am »
Thanks for your replies. Robert -  I'm renting the land long term so it's really in my own interests that I try to improve the grass. Sue - I will get a  soil test kit, what should the pH of grassland be ideally? If lime and/or fertilizer is to be put on the field how long afterwards can sheep be put back on the grass? Thank you
4 pet sheep

Factotum

  • Joined Jun 2012
Re: Yearly plan for grass land management
« Reply #5 on: August 22, 2012, 01:21:09 pm »
Hello again,

Re pH - see the info in the link attached:

http://www.aglime.org.uk/tech/ph_value_and_lime_requirements.php

There is more info on some of the other pages.

Hope this helps

Sue

suziequeue

  • Joined Feb 2010
  • Llanidloes; Powys
Re: Yearly plan for grass land management
« Reply #6 on: August 22, 2012, 01:38:30 pm »
How long after liming do you have to keep livestock off?
We do the best we can with the information we have

When we know better we do better

Factotum

  • Joined Jun 2012
Re: Yearly plan for grass land management
« Reply #7 on: August 22, 2012, 06:13:53 pm »
I think once it's been rained on, the lime washes in and then livestock can safely graze.
 Don't think there's any specific time for exclusion.

Sue

sabrina

  • Joined Nov 2008
Re: Yearly plan for grass land management
« Reply #8 on: August 22, 2012, 08:41:14 pm »
One of the things the farmers around me use is scallop shells ( not sure of the spelling sorry ) No idea how they break them up wither going through the spreader does it but a fresh load goes on every year.I expect they get them free.

deepinthewoods

  • Guest
Re: Yearly plan for grass land management
« Reply #9 on: August 22, 2012, 09:01:56 pm »
gypsum is better to break up clay than lime according to lawrence d hills.

 

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