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ADDING WHITE CLOVER TO THE SWARD

white clover webGrass and clover mixtures produce scientifically proven yield benefits, compared to the same varieties sown individually. White clover has been selected to withstand being grazed or cut, so the choice of companion grass depends on the primary use of the sward, ie grazing or cutting. The ideal grass is typically ryegrass, as it has good nitrogen use efficiency.

This means it can successfully convert the nitrates produced by the clover into plant yield. Research carried out by Teagasc has shown increased Dry Matter (DM) yields of 2 tonne/DM ha (Dry matter/hectare) from White Clover and Perennial ryegrass swards versus a pure Perennial ryegrass sward.

The optimum amount of clover in a field is 30% of the DM of the total sward. At this level, clover can fix 150kg N/ha per year and both animal and companion grass performance will benefit from it being there.

OVER-SEEDING CLOVER INTO EXISTING GRASSLAND

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SOWING INFORMATION

Sowing time: April/May – August

Sowing rate: 0.5 kg – 1.5kg/acre (plus 13 kg PRG)

                     2 - 3 kg/acre (overseed)

 

YIELD & FEED QUALITY (Grass plus white clover)

Average DM yield: 12 – 14 tonne DM/ha

Dry Matter: 12 – 15%

Crude protein: 18-25%

Digestibility: 70 - 72% (DMD)

Metabolisable energy: 10.5 – 11.5 Mj/kg DM