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Renewing pasture is crucial for maintaining healthy dairy farms, and there are four primary methods to consider: cultivation, spray-drilling, undersowing, and oversowing. Each method has its pros and cons, with factors like cost, time, and specific pasture conditions influencing the choice of renewal approach. Choose the method that aligns with your farm's needs and conditions.
There are four main ways to renew pasture, cultivation, spray-drilling, undersowing and oversowing.
Involves breaking up the soil prior to sowing with the likes of a plough, power harrow, discs or rotocrumbler. It is necessary where there is a need to eliminate compaction or levelling, or lime incorporation is required.
A direct-drill is used to sow treated seed into an uncultivated paddock after existing pasture killed by herbicide.
White clover establishment (after killing existing pasture)
Drill ryegrass using the main-seed box. Drop white clover seed onto the soil surface from the small-seeds box in front of coulters sowing the ryegrass. Cover seed with a brush or bar harrow.
Note: Sowing ryegrass and white clover seed through the same coulter results in poor white clover establishment because the clover is drilled too deep, (1-2cm is suitable for ryegrass but not clover) and clover seedlings are forced to compete with more vigorous ryegrass seedlings growing in the same drill row.
Use a direct-drill to sow treated seed into existing pasture.
Works very well in the narrow window of time when a pasture has thinned out but has not yet been overtaken by weed ingression.
Use after extended dry conditions where large areas need to be sown, or after winter pugging damage.
Results are variable where it’s used in pastures too dense for the new seedlings to establish well.
Treated seed is broadcasted on to the surface of the soil.
Not recommended for improvement of lowland pastures due to high seeding mortality.
Sowing rates are generally higher, as establishment rates of seed placed on the ground surface are lower.