By Genevieve Slocum / January 2, 2017 / 2 Comments
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Genevieve provides forage and cover crop research and marketing support for King's AgriSeeds Inc. in Lancaster County, PA. She has also worked on organic vegetable farms and as an intern in agricultural field trials at the Rodale Institute.
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In Missouri we inter-seed grazing type alfalfa’s into our fescue clover mixed pastures with no-till drills at 4 lbs/ac rate to get a 10-15% stand. It tolerates ourdry summers and has a deep tap root and is a perennial versus a red clover which is a bi-annual. We limit white clover as it is a very aggressive spreader and can reduce forage production especially on over grazed pastures and is very hard to kill back or to interseed into. If using white clovers we seed at a maximum rate of 1 lb/ac and usually seed at 1/2 lb/ac. I have seen stands of alfalfa in pastures lasting 8-10 years or longer if managed properly.
Thanks for that info. Our pastures have lots of white clovers already but almost no red clovers. Rest periods in our system vary widely and range from a low of 12-14 days up to as long as 60 days. It all depends on the growth. We target moving sheep ideally every 2-3 days but can stretch out to 5-7 days. Lambing is longer move times as we don’t like to move young lambs and don’t have a way to do drift lambing with enough guard dogs to protect all the lambs. Our soils are typically alkaline, ranging from 6.6-7.9 pH. PO4-P was 13.2 over most of the grazing but 7 in one pasture. I’m due for new soil tests this year anyway so I’ll get more data this coming season.
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