The aim of building grass over the coming weeks is to ensure a bank of grass is available in the autumn when growth rates start to decline.
It is hugely beneficial to have a grass bank available to extend the grazing season, with every extra day at grass in the autumn worth €1.80/cow/day. For farms with early turnout potential, closing the platform with sufficient grass will also help achieve early turnout next spring.
Current Grassland Advice
• Aim to extend the rotation to 30 days by September 1st. For example, the target for a 60-acre platform, grazing 2 acres/day (approx. 3% of the farm per day) = 33-35 days by mid-September.
• Make all land on the milking platform available for grazing to extend the rotation. Remove surplus livestock from the grazing platform to reduce demand where needed.
• If you are behind the target currently, increase supplementation by 1-2 kg to reduce overall grass demand.
• Achieve residuals of 3.5-4 cm to stimulate growth throughout the winter and avoid the carryover of dead material over the winter and into the following spring.
• Farms that are behind or on target should avoid taking out surplus bales from September 1st onwards. Where ahead of target and surplus grass is available (100 kg ahead of average farm cover targets below), do not delay in taking out surplus grass.
• Demand is your control when building grass. If you are behind target, decrease your demand on the platform by removing surplus stock off the platform, bringing back in additional ground/area, and/or increasing supplementation.
For further information on grassland management this autumn, contact your local Agritech Sales Advisor.