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No point in paying over €300 an acre for reseeding if post-management is neglected

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IF you have gone to the trouble and expense of reseeding (up to €320/acre), every effort is needed to ensure that you have a dense, leafy clover/grass sward available for your stock next spring. Post-emergence management of ryegrass and clover seedlings, along with weed control, are both as important as sowing the new ley itself – this care is very much the same whether clover is present or not. 

Post Emergence Management: The aim of reseeding is to allow grass and clover seedlings establish and develop after sowing. Allowing the grass to get too high will shade out the clover seedlings. Grass seedlings will not tiller out in this situation either. Best suggested practice is to first lightly graze the sward with sheep or weanlings before closing for the winter.

This will encourage the young grass plants to tiller out and the sward to thicken up. A light grazing also exposes emerging clover to light and enables it to develop and grow. If possible, delay any cutting of silage for twelve months to allow grass tillering and clover establishment. 

Some light grazing of the reseeded sward may need to be carried out over the winter months to prevent grass from getting too high. A bag of CAN/acre can be applied after 15th January next year with a tight first grazing being undertaken. Avoid poaching of reseeded swards when grazing. Remove stock during periods of heavy rainfall.

 Weed Control: The most cost effective method of weed control is to use a post emergence herbicide.  The best time to control weeds is at the four leaf stage in weed seedlings. By using a clover safe post emergence spray, seedling weeds can be destroyed before they develop and establish root stocks. Established weeds can seriously reduce the yield potential and economic lifetime of the reseeded sward.

The post emergence spray should be applied approximately six weeks after establishment just before the first grazing takes place. Seedling docks and thistles along with tillage weeds such as Redshank, Rat Hen, Charlock and Chickweed can be controlled in newly established swards by using Legumex DB, Alistell, Underclear/Undersown and Mastercrop Undersown.

These sprays will not damage seedling clover after the trifoliate leaf stage; and they will not affect young grass shoots. Alistell and Underclear would be the products of choice if chickweed is present.

For non clover reseed swards, herbicide sprays such as Pastor, Nintex, Dockstar etc can be used. Check with local Agri-Merchants for other herbicide sprays that could be used. These sprays will wipe out any seedling clover present in the new ley. They will control most emerging perennial weeds and tillage weeds.

Again, they should be applied to new swards 6 to 8 weeks post sowing where needed. Follow the manufacturer’s advice on the information leaflet on each pack/container of spray in relation to rates/ha and dilution rates. Ensure to keep the prescribed Cross Compliance records for any chemical spray used.

Pest Control: Pests such as Leatherjackets, Wireworms and Frit flies should not be a problem in grass seedlings if the seedbed and field margins were free of trash and decaying organic material at the time of sowing. This deprives these pests of the environment on which they thrive. Slugs and leatherjackets could be a problem in heavier soils. If infestation is a serious problem, consult your local Teagasc Adviser/Agricultural Consultant or Agri-Merchants on what pesticide to use.

*Anthony O’Connor is a drystock adviser with Teagasc, Athenry. Comments to anthony.oconnor@teagasc.ie 

 

Connacht Tribune

Fair Deal reached as Bill is enacted

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Maura Canning: Good day expected.
Maura Canning, the former IFA Farm Family and Social Affairs Chairperson

RELIEF has been expressed this week in farming and political circles that at last the Fair Deal Nursing Home legislations changes have been passed by the Oireachtas.

The Bill went through the Dáil last Thursday and the Seanad on Friday, bringing to a conclusion a campaign that started back in 2012.

Maura Canning, the former IFA Farm Family and Social Affairs Chairperson, told the Farming Tribune there was a great sense of relief that a nine-year long campaign had at last got over the line.

“It has been such a long and difficult campaign to secure this deal with a lot of complications and obstacles along the way. At times, we seemed to be almost there, until something happened to hold up the process, but there really was a great sense of relief last Friday when the Bill at last passed through its final stages,” said Maura Canning.

She paid a particular to former Minister of State, Jim Daly; the current incumbent Mary Butler; and also to the many TDs and Senators that had been lobbied over the years on the issue. “No TD ever failed to return a call,” she said.

The key change in the new Bill is that there will be a three-year cap on the 7.5% annual contribution of the overall value of the farm where the farmer or their spouse is in a nursing home. There are a number of conditions attached to this CAP, the most significant of which is the fact that the farm must be signed over fully to the inheritor for a five-year period and this person must also continue farming on the land.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Connacht Tribune

Stay safe on the farm

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GALWAY farmers have again been reminded during Farm Safety Week to ‘stop, think and slow down’ as they go about their work during the busy Summer season – and indeed for the rest of the year as well.

Roy O’Brien, Galway/Mayo IFA Regional Executive, told the Farming Tribune that too many farm families had been impacted upon by fatalities or life-changing injuries over recent years.

“In their daily work, farmers have to be a bit of everything from a vet to a mechanic to a driver of heavy machinery and often these tasks have to be carried out with no one else around.

“I think that this change of duties represents one of the big challenges to farmers in terms of their own health and safety. Every day can bring a new job and a new safety challenge,” said Roy O’Brien.

Galway IFA Chairperson, Anne Mitchell, said it was shocking to think that between 2011 and 2020, 21 children had lost their lives in farm accidents across the country.

“While children look forward to being home on the farm for the Summer, now is an important time to have conversations about safety.

“Tell them about the dangers and set the rules but don’t expect a child to take on the responsibility of keeping themselves safe. Children do not understand risk,” said Anne Mitchell.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

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Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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Connacht Tribune

Top ten steps to reduce GHGs

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Suckler herds: The longer they can be kept out to grass, the better it is for reducing emissions.

TEAGASC has outlined a 10-step programme to help beef farmers reduce their carbon footprint over the coming years as part of agriculture’s contribution to the cutting of Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions.

Martina Harrington, Teagasc Beef Specialist, has outlined that 68% of all agricultural GHG emissions in Ireland are methane based while almost all the rest are nitrous oxide – less than 3% are carbon dioxide.

She explained in the latest edition of the Teagasc magazine, Today’s Farm, that methane is a by-product of the digestive system of animals while nitrous oxide (N2O) is a gas caused by the breakdown of nitrogen.

In terms of methane reductions, Martina Harrington, recommends more efficient suckler cows; better daily weight gains from calves; the possible use of feed additives; and an extension of the grazing season to reduce slurry volumes.

As regards nitrous oxide, she recommends a reduction in the amount of synthetic fertiliser to be applied by improving soil fertility, especially in relation to soil pH levels [liming].

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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