26 September 1997

Clover could add up to £52 a cow

CLOVER may be one way to increase yields economicallyat grass, producing milk worth an extra £52 a cow through thegrazing season, according to Somerset-based KingshayFarming Trust.

Duncan Forbes told visitors to its Dairy Event display that a Kingshay study had shown that a 30% clover sward increased cow yields by 2 litres a day above grass alone.

Fertiliser was applied at typical rates of 310kg/ha (250 units/acre) to both grass/clover and grass swards. Over five years the nitrogen has not caused modern clover varieties, that have longer stems and bigger leaves, to fall below 30% of the sward.

Income could also be increased by £46 a cow by choosing the correct maize variety, and by £18 a cow using a forage turnip catch crop, he added.