Grassland launch in 2015: Here are some tips for a successful season.

What is crucial for an excellent basic diet from grassland grassland is an optimum plant population with a large portion of valuable grasses. More than 75 percent of German pasture grass should be targeted for milk production on areas used intensively. The following tips will help you achieve this target for the best launch into the 2015 grassland season.

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Successful enterprises regularly do secondary seeding because valuable grasses do not get to their intensive grassland on their own. There is a great deal of controversy on the right time for secondary seeding. The experts at AGRAVIS Raiffeisen AG recomment scattering your risk by doing secondary seeding both in spring and autumn. One of the important things is a high proportion of German pasture grass in the mixture because this species of grass combines an excellent feed value with the maximum competitive force.

Platinum for secondary seeding

Farmers deciding to take this step are well advised to use AGRAVIS Plantinum secondary seed mixtures AGRAVIS Plantinum secondary seed mixtures for secondary seeds on intensively used pastures. These contain 100 percent varieties recommended by the Chamber for Agriculture. It is generally known that molehills on the grassland should be levelled after winter and this can be done with a scrubber or curry-comb with a crossboard plus secondary seeding.

Many grass crops went into winter with high-standing grass because of the extremely growth-promoting weather in the autumn of 2014. Mice can multiply greatly in such sumptuous turf and damage the grass. Mice can only be combated in a time-consuming manner by means of a dispensing gun. However, on highly damaged areas, this, in addition to ploughing and cost-intensive reseeding, is the only chance to save crops. This is the reason why it is advisable to regularly check your areas and combat mice if there is greater infestation.

Tips for repair

In addition, valuable grasses such as German pasture grass are pushed back in winter depending upon the weather and how long there is snow cover is or black frost. A matted stigma that is threatening to suffocate under dead plant material should be ventilated with the curry-comb at an early stage. The best thing would be in combination with a platinum secondary seeding mixture for closing the stigma gaps. Depending upon the damage done, five to ten kilograms should be placed per hectare every year and the amount of seed stock should be increased to 10 to 20 kilograms to repair greater damage. This is where special secondary seeding machines are often used with disc shares and close rows that can put down the seed stock best.

First rollers, then shooting

Last year, a lot of contractors invested in new powerful secondary seeding equipment in the grassland regions. Anybody who wants to use this equipment should get in contact with the contractor at an early stage. The rule for using rollers to cultivate grassland is that only thawed areas should be rolled and only if the soil is not excessively moist. Furthermore, rolling should completed on time before shooting to avoid lower yields.

Furthermore, when fertilising with cattle liquid manure or digestate, you have to know the nutrition content. Unfortunately, many enterprises overestimate the quantities of potassium taken on by spreading the liquid manure. After all, you can only fertilise what you need if you know what is in it. Beyond this, you should make sure that the liquid is sufficiently homogenised when placing early in spring as is often desired. For example, thick liquid manure can suffocate the turf and baffle plates even intensify the problem. That means they are no longer state-of-the-art in terms of precise placing with the least loss. What would be better is placing homogenised thin liquid manure close to the soil.

We can rest assured that the future of placing technique on the grassland is in injecting – even in combination with secondary seeding. Using liquid manure before the first cut is supplemented by mineral fertilising. A sufficiently early fertilisation with sulphurous N-fertiliser has to be ensured. Sulphur (or sulphate) is only released at higher soil temperatures so that there is frequently not enough sulphate available to plants for the first step. Ideal mineral fertilisation for this first step would be ammonia sulphate nitrates at 26 percent of N (seven percent of nitrate and 19 percent ammonium) and 13 percent of S.

More information on the topic of pasture care is provided by crop farming consulting at AGRAVIS Raiffeisen AG: Dr. Stefan Wichmann, Tel. 0172 . 8931857, and Thomas Schulze Pröbsting,, Tel. 0172 . 6799053.