Grass and Multi-species with Specialist Nutrition

Grass and Multi-species with Specialist Nutrition

Ensuring a grazing platform has the highest quality grass and grazing utilisation is essential to maximise grass as a feed source in economic terms.

Grazed grass with clover is the cheapest feed available to Irish farmers, and during the grazing season, animal performance is achieved almost entirely from grazed grass.

Research shows that each extra tonne of grass dry matter utilised is worth €181 and €105/ha per year to dairy and drystock farmers, respectively. Sowing a grass mixture that produces high yields of quality forage throughout the season is key to maximising grass utilisation on farms.

Having a diverse sward of perennial grass, clover, and multi-species swards on the grazing platform will ensure a steady supply of the highest quality forage through spring, summer, and autumn, buffering against drought and reducing the cost of forage production.

"We have a close working relationship with Nigel Condell from Specialist Nutrition. Nigel began working with us three years ago and has really become a partner in helping us get the most from our herd of Holstein Friesian cows.

The light type of soil we have is always a struggle during the summer months, with as little as a week without rain putting the farm under pressure. Finding a forage that would withstand these conditions and fit into our intensive farming system proved difficult. After speaking to Nigel, we selected the DLF Multi-Species 6-Species Herbal Ley mixture as the best fit for our situation.

The multi-species sward proved to be a massive hit with our herd! So much so that we are working with Nigel on a reseeding plan incorporating more multi-species into the farm over time.

In order to free up our grazing platform from silage production, we sowed DLF N Saver silage from Specialist Nutrition this spring in one of the driest fields. It made very high quailty bales, coming in at 20.8% crude protein. The clover in the mix also reduced the need for the amount of fertiliser that would have typically gone out on the silage platform.

Nigel works with us to formulate diets that combine the forage and cereal crops we produce on farm in a way that maximises the herd performance – we call him our "Masterchef!

- Tom, Patrick & Philip Murphy, Swiftsheath, Co. Kilkenny

Have a look below to see what else our customers have to say:

We sowed a field of multi-species sward in June of this year. At first, we grazed it with calves, which had a very good clean out. Since then, the cows have been grazing it every 14-15 days, and we’re very happy with how it performed during the drought. There is now an ongoing reseeding programme with Specialist Nutrition as we plan to set more multi-species sward next year. ― Sean & George O'Mara, Belgooly, Co. Cork
I sowed the field of Multi-Species Sward in June this year as a way of reducing fertiliser use. The paddock was given an application of fertiliser when it was sown, and that's been it! I was unsure of it at first, but the multi-species has good cover and clean-out and worked well for us during the drought this year. I am thinking about putting in another field of it next year as part of the grazing rotation. ― John Michael O'Donovan, Clonakilty, Co. Cork
This year is my first time to sow Multi-Species Sward. I saw a farmer online talking about it and I was interested to give it a try. Rachel from Specialist Nutrition has given me good support on how to manage and graze the sward. It was very low input getting some fertiliser at sowing and two runs of the dribble bar this year. The paddock continued growing during the drought on very dry soil, outperforming the grass in the other paddocks. It fits into the rotation, and the cows seem to like it. It worked for our farm and our land, and I am thinking about adding another field next year. ― Michael Leary, Macroom, Co. Cork
We reseeded two paddocks this spring with Specialist Grazer HVS. When the cows graze these paddocks, the milk yield goes up by an average of 1.5 litres per cow. During the summer, the growth rates in those paddocks were exceptional, and we were grazing them every 10-12 days. We are also pleased with graze outs in these paddocks. ― Billy Wiseman, Macroom, Co.Cork

Have a look at what else we do:

- Grass and Multi-species

- Herd nutrition and diet management