Increasing Grassland Yields.

Posted by Jason White on Jan 7, 2019 10:46:00 AM
Jason White
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Ellis Machinery's five steps to improving your grass yields and ultimately your profitability.  Not enough effort put in up front in the care for the soil or incorrect applications can result in waste, a poor crop and affect animal health.


1) Soil structure is important.

Keeping the soil well-aerated helps it to warm up quickly and more air and water is available to grass swards.  Maintaining the correct soil structure is very important during the early part of the season.  You can improve soil structure using grassland subsoilers, these are similar to any agricultural subsoiler but with a disc in front of the leg to enable it to pass through the grass roots without ripping.  There are also many aerators and slitters on the market with are also important tools.  You can check out the range from Ellis Machinery here.


2) Improve the efficiency with the correct soil pH.

Nitrogen, Phosphate and Potash work best when soil pH is between 6.5 and 7.5. Maintenance of pH is critical, if pH drops mineralisation is slowed up considerably.  Get your soil tested regularly and ensure the pH is at its optimum level, it'll save you money in the long run.

 Amazone Fertiliser Spinner #

3) Drive your yields with Nitrogen.

Nitrogen is the major nutrient required by grass. It is the key to achieving high dry matter yields and is often strategically used to increase production as it is needed.  The key to achieving high yields is to apply the correct amount of nitrogen and at the right time.

Recommended applications:

- 160kg/ha to first-cut silage

- 150kg/ha to second-cut.


4) Analyse the slurries.

The potash content of slurries never match book values, as it is influenced by seasonal variations.  Other applications may be needed to balance this to ensure optimum mineralisation of the soil.


5) Every field is different.

Apply all of the above 4 points on a field-by-field basis and develop a balanced nutrient management plan for every field. Treating each field on its own merits will increase performance overall, it may take more time planning and calculating but with profits being squeezed getting the maximum from every square inch of your land become ever more important.


Taking care to get the most from your grass will in turn get the most from the animals that consume it!  Following the above points should help improve your yields, and when it comes to time to get the crop in Ellis Machinery will be here with their wide range of mowers, rakes, tedders, trailers and more to help you get it in quickly.

Foraging Grassland

Topics: Case Studies, Agronomy

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