Dryland Pastures

Autumn at Bonavaree – Challenges and opportunities under lock down

It was great to have some rain last week – it allowed Fraser Avery some time to write about his planning for lucerne and sub clover after the first autumn rains – and to reflect on missing the opportunity to host us all at Bonavaree last week. On the farm Yes it is raining! When…

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Sub clover emerges in Taihape

After my last blog post Andrew Peters from Taihape responded with his experience of increasing sub clover on farm. About 20 years ago he started putting “some” sub clover in with his fertiliser. I asked Andrew what that meant? “The loader driver was given a rat bait container and told to put one in each…

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Agriculture and Science – Essential in a crisis

The recent rain across the country may cause pastures to green up. Stay off them if you want to have feed in spring. At this time of year it is important to get a canopy of green leaves covering the ground extensively before winter temperatures cause growth rates to slow. For dryland farmers the rain…

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Tupping on lucerne – Autumn 2018 update

We were recently contacted by a Vet because he had visited a property where Romney ewe hoggets had been grazing lucerne since January 4th til APRIL 4th. At this time the hoggets were showing signs of udder development which is a clear indication of a highly oestrogenic crop. In our experience young stock such as…

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Causes of elevated coumestrol content in lucerne

Rachel Fields presented her PhD exit seminar on Friday 14th July at Lincoln University’s Field Research Centre (FRC). This video is a shortened version of that seminar presenting her main research findings. The topic of Rachel’s PhD was ‘Causes of elevated coumestrol in lucerne and mitigation of the subsequent risk to ewe reproductive performance’ Coumestrol…

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More about sub clovers in autumn: it is not hard to understand hard seeds

Posted on behalf of Carmen Teixeira (PhD candidate with the Dryland Pasture Research Team) The longevity of sub clover in the swards is largely controlled by seed hardness. Seed hardness is common in legumes such as sub clover. It is a strategy to prevent germination during unsuitable ecological conditions, mainly when the probability of seedling…

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Sub clover germinating in Marlborough this season

Here are some photos of sub clover taken by Doug Avery on ‘Bonavaree’ Farm in Marlborough. Legume–dominant pasture in spring 2016 The photo below shows Fraser Avery standing in high quality legume dominant pasture last spring (1 October 2016). This is ‘Antas’ sub clover which has been allowed to set seed in its first year and…

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Planning for sub clover dominant spring pastures in autumn

Want sub clover for your lactating ewes in spring? Plan for it now. For those of you wanting to sow sub clover this autumn, here is some advice to get you started. Why sub clover? Sub clover seed costs about $120-$150/ha plus drilling costs. The sub clover may provide 2-4 t DM/ha in a mixed pasture during spring…

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Effects of herbicides on subterranean clover

On 29 July 2016 Professor Derrick Moot headed out to the Ashley Dene research farm to look at an experiment being conducted by Masters student Teresa. This experiment is investigating the effects of nine different herbicide treatments on the survival and productivity of five different subterranean clover cultivars established in autumn and spray at one of two different…

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