Product Used: Moby Forage Barley
The use of forage barley, in preference to oats, provided extra hay compared to the previous year’s production on the property of Shane Hardwick, of Greendale, west of Sydney, New South Wales. Mr Hardwick said he harvested an extra 100 to 150 small square bales of hay from the 10 hectare paddock of Moby forage barley compared to oats grown there the year before. “I did it for a change, to look and see the results,” he said. “I was very impressed.” He said the Moby established really well and looked very thick.
“It actually looked like a crop of millet from a distance. It made the paddock look very thick for a winter crop.” Some of the paddock was also cut with a forage harvester which was fed to the cattle prior to it being cut for hay. The cattle loved it. They couldn’t get enough of it,” Mr Hardwick said. “We had to make sure the fences were right.” A number of people have enquired about purchasing the hay, but it will be utilised on-farm to feed the cattle during drier period across summer. “I’ll definitely be growing more barley next year,” Mr Hardwick said. “I’ll also encourage a few of my mates to try it.” He said he also had an off-farm job which meant he couldn’t always be available to look after the crops.
“I liked how you could put it in and it looked after itself,” he said. The crop received chicken manure and some other fertiliser prior to planting. Outback oats were also grown last season and were able to be grazed by the cattle throughout the season. The extra grazing from the oats and hay from the barley has provided enough forage to see the cattle through. “It is an advantage as we are not looking for extra area,” Mr Hardwick said. Millet has been grown in the barley paddock as a summer feed option and then it will be rotated straight back into a second year of Moby barley.
Shane and Lily Hardwick, of Greendale, NSW preparing to plant Moby forage barley.