21 July 1995

Tastiness is a big priority

PALATABILITY is the main priority for independent grass specialist John Jemmett, who also formulates seed mixtures for south-west co-op Mole Valley Farmers.

"Mole Valley Farmers mixtures contain varieties of proven palatability only," stresses Mr Jemmett, who runs trials on farms throughout the south-west to test palatability.

"Two varieties may have the same mid-season D-value but there could be distinct differences in palatability," he adds.

Mr Jemmett says he does not include a new variety in Mole Valley seed mixture until it has been shown to be superior in terms of palatability or disease resistance to those offered already.

He admits that swards can remain productive when well managed, but cites a 20-25% increase in dry matter of a reseed a year for the first two years, depending on the quality of the old sward.

Producers who place high reliance on grass must manage and renew or rejuvenate the sward sufficiently frequently to maximise its production, he says.

Palatability is a priority for grass specialist John Jemmett.