24 August 2001

Winter oats are nutritious

INTEREST in growing winter oats rather than barley or wheat is increasing on livestock units with the arrival of new stiffer strawed varieties.

Institute of Grassland and Environmental Research consultant, Bryan Evans explains that these newer winter oats are more tolerant of slightly acidic soils than barley and have all the traditional nutritional merits of oats.

"The new variety, Millennium, grown on one of our Focus Farms yielded 6.8t/ha, or 0.6t/ha more than winter barley grown in the other half of the same field.

"It received 30kgN/ha less than the barley and produced nearly double the straw yield. The grain is being fed to finishing bulls and we are monitoring their performance," he explains. &#42