Product Used: Turbo Persian Clover, Ovaflow Sub Clover, Jumbo White Clover, Origin Winter Active Tall Fescue, Optima Tetraploid Perennial Ryegrass
A pasture put in as a long term option has been highly productive in its first two years on the property of Gary Kadwell, at Grabben Gullen, south-west of Crookwell on the Southern Tablelands of New South Wales. Mr Kadwell sowed ten hectares of pasture in March of 2011, with the mix consisting of Turbo Persian Clover, Ovaflow Sub Clover, Jumbo White Clover, Origin Fescue, Optima Ryegrass and Perun Festulolium. He said the mix worked well with the ryegrass and, festulolium and fescue producing good early feed and the clovers really coming into their own during the spring and summer months. Generally the ryegrass part of the mix had been dominant early although Mr Kadwell said the fescue component could come into its own if the season suited. “Sometimes the ryegrasses are better and sometimes the fescues are better,” he said. During the first season the paddock was cut for hay, with some 3000 small square bales and 25 4 foot by 4 foot round bales cut off the forage. The hay took out first place in the Crookwell Show Competition Best Hay or Silage division. This year some 250 ewes lambed down on the pasture with each producing twins that did very well on the feed. Mr Kadwell said they scanned the ewes and put those that were having twins out to the paddock.
He said they aimed at between 150 to 160 lambing percentage each season, with twins a large part of the operation and the feed important to bring them through to maturity. The pasture fed the lambs up to the sucker stage and the ewes also did well on the feed. “To pull off that much feed it is really doing the job,” Mr Kadwell said. After the ewes and lambs were taken from the paddock, it was slashed down to a height of six inches and allowed to recover before being cut for hay in mid-November. Mr Kadwell said he estimated the hay cut and between 250 and 300 big square bales of good density. He said the pasture mix didn’t get overly high but produced a great amount of bulk which assisted in creating the excellent yields. The paddock is not irrigated, although it is well supplied with nutrition to ensure it produces the maximum amount of forage across the season. Fertiliser is applied after the hay cut and also during the autumn months. Mr Kadwell said the mix was working particularly well with different species showing their dominance in areas of the paddock that may have varied soil types. While the region is predominantly winter rainfall, there has been a higher amount of summer rain in recent seasons, which had suited some species. “The white clover is really shining with the summer rainfall,” Mr Kadwell said. It is envisaged the pasture mix will provide at least five to six years of production on the property.
Gary Kadwell, at Grabben Gullen, south-west of Crookwell on the Southern Tablelands of New South Wale