Thinking of Seeding Your Pastures?

By this time of year, any seeding of forages would be considered a dormant seeding. Seeds planted now will lay there until the right conditions present themselves closer to spring. Most producers with pasture or hay ground understand the concept of “frost-seeding.” Frost-seeding is taking advantage of the freeze-thaw process of the soil during winter months. When water in the soil freezes, it moves upward, pushing some soil with it. This creates little pockets for seed to fall into, especially slick smooth seeds like clover. This process provides a good environment for seed-to-soil contact and good conditions for that seed to grow later. Soils that have been disturbed and that have more soil visible are subject to more heaving due to a lack of enough vegetative buffers. Soils that are bare or that have thin cover will freeze quicker and deeper. Soils with heavy cover sometimes don’t freeze much at all. If you already have some clover planted and are just enhancing what you have, then utilize improved varieties for the best results. If not, then you should inoculate the seed with the appropriate rhizobium. The seed may germinate and thrive without it, but it will do so much better if it is present, especially if one of the goals for planting the legume is as a nitrogen source for the grass component of the stand. Th

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One thought on “Thinking of Seeding Your Pastures?

  1. jim gerrish in a free program for Utah cattlemen in provo Utah maybe 5 years ago ……said cows eat the legumes and pee out the excess nitrogen…. 7 times a day. we see the circles …. so I think …. even though my gated pipe irrigated pastures 3 miles north of buhl Idaho are so thick with grass in some places..no clover will survive( no til planted with haybuster 107s) even a few plants …anywhere…. will result in fertilizing with nitrogen . at age 74 at the time this is the first I heard of this…. it makes more sense than expecting a clover to fix nitrogen enough in the soil to make a difference ….any comments?

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