As the weather begins to improve and ground conditions become more favorable, farmers in Ireland may want to consider reseeding their paddocks. Grass plays a critical role on the majority of Irish livestock farms, and regular reseeding is necessary to maintain its quality. Additionally, reseeding can also improve soil fertility.
Older swards become less productive and are more likely to have a higher weed content. Therefore, paddocks with older swards that have high levels of weeds or little to no ryegrass should be targeted for reseeding. Furthermore, older swards typically have poor-quality grass, making it challenging to get cows to achieve the clean out in paddocks that would be desired.
There are several methods for reseeding, and each can be successful when done correctly. It is essential to remove as much of the old swards as possible, which is typically achieved by spraying off the paddock. Farmers should also pay close attention to the weather forecast and ensure that the conditions are suitable for the plants. Proper nutrient levels are also crucial.
In April and early May, many farmers focus on getting clover into their swards. There are two options for this: oversowing or a complete reseed. For those completing a reseed, it is important to ensure that the mix contains clover and that it is managed correctly. For those oversowing clover, it may be more challenging to find clover seed this year due to global shortages. However, if seed is available, oversowing in clean paddocks can be successful if the swards are managed correctly.
In conclusion, reseeding paddocks is critical for maintaining the quality of grass on Irish livestock farms. Older swards should be targeted for reseeding to improve productivity and reduce weed content. Farmers must pay attention to the weather forecast and nutrient levels to ensure successful reseeding. For those looking to add clover to their swards, both oversowing and complete reseeding can be successful with proper management.