Know How / Grassland management

In the current challenging climate, all livestock producers are under pressure to maximise the cheapest food source – grass.
See the latest thinking on grazing methods, forage systems, reseeding and varieties as well as how others are making more from grass.

Advice and tips

FEED AND NUTRITION

Sheep health and nutrition tips in a heatwave

So far, the hot, dry summer, especially after a tough spring, is making it difficult for sheep producers to get lambs fit and off farm while keeping ewes in good…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

How to act on drought and tightening forage stocks

Prolonged hot and dry weather has put pressure on forage stocks, with grass growth plummeting in most areas of the country. Figures from AgriNet up to 4 July show grass…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

How to ‘home-test’ grass to know when to cut for silage

With late application of fertiliser and slurry to crops this spring, it has never been more important to test grass before cutting for silage. Excess nitrogen is a risk in…

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Archive

FEED AND NUTRITION

Cattle bounce back after poor fodder beet growth rates

A project at Harper Adams is investigating if it is feasible to finish dairy-bred beef calves on forage alone.  The project, led by Adas and funded by AHDB Beef &…

FEED AND NUTRITION

Why a spring-calving dairy farmer has bought a feeder wagon

Most spring calving dairy farmers would grimace at the thought of buying a feeder wagon. However, some are spring systems are doing just that in an attempt to extend grazing…

BEEF

Couple makes success of farming on remote Orkney island

Healthy and efficient animals are a must for Neil and Jocelyn Rendall, who farm one of the most remote and smallest Orkney islands. The Isle of Papa Westray (“Papay”), one…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

How to ‘home-test’ grass to know when to cut for silage

With late application of fertiliser and slurry to crops this spring, it has never been more important to test grass before cutting for silage. Excess nitrogen is a risk in…

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Case studies

SHEEP

2018 FW Awards: Sheep Farmer of the Year finalists

Each of the three finalists in the 2018 Farmers Weekly Sheep Farmer of the Year category are well-positioned to meet the challenges of Brexit. They have developed profitable and sustainable…

DAIRY

How a grass-based dairy enterprise took the Gold Cup

The Leen is the first ever grass-based dairy enterprise to win the distinguished NMR/RABDF Gold Cup award. Brothers Chris and Rich Norman, who milk 600 autumn-calving cows, beat off stiff…

LIVESTOCK

Building demolition prompts switch to low-cost sheep system

A mixed-farming enterprise which had to give up its indoor lambing facilities is to adopt the same low-cost principles in its sheep flock as it applies to its dairy herd…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

How willow can reduce flood risk and earn farms £618/ha

Growing willow is a diversification option that can earn farmers up to £618/ha (£250/acre) a year and help protect land against flooding and soil erosion. At Langwathby Hall Farm, near…

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Insights

FEED AND NUTRITION

Cattle bounce back after poor fodder beet growth rates

A project at Harper Adams is investigating if it is feasible to finish dairy-bred beef calves on forage alone.  The project, led by Adas and funded by AHDB Beef &…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

How Finnish farmers have doubled grass growth

The short, five-month grass growing season that Finnish farmers face will strike a chord with many UK counterparts following one of the toughest spring growing seasons on record. Yet progressive…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

How livestock producers in NI are making better use of grass

A collaboration between researchers, farmers and industry in Northern Ireland is helping livestock producers make better use of grass. Established in 1999, the GrassCheck project is operated by Northern Ireland’s…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Promising weight gains made from grass in dairy beef study

Last October, work to investigate the feasibility of a low-cost dairy beef production system was launched at Harper Adams University with the aim of maximising output from forage and minimising…

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News

FEED AND NUTRITION

Protein forage crops can give £178/ha gains, says study

Alternative forage crops can produce up to 14t of DM/ha at 20% protein with net financial gains of £178/ha, a five-year research programme has shown. The Sustainable Forage Protein project…

LIVESTOCK

12 varieties added to grass and clover recommended lists

Twelve varieties of grass and clover have been added to the 2018-19 Recommended Grass and Clover Lists (RGCL), which were released at Grassland UK last week. The 12 varieties added…

LIVESTOCK

Cheaper grandfather rights spraying qualification ends soon

Experienced pesticide and herbicide users born before 31 December 1964 need to complete “the safe use of pesticides replacing grandfather rights” qualification before 31 December or they will face a more…

HEALTH AND WELFARE

Nematodirus risk increases as temperatures rise

Sheep producers are being warned to be on their guard against nematodirus disease following the sudden spike in temperatures.   The Sustainable Control of Parasites in Sheep (Scops) nematodirus forecast map…

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Test and reviews

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Buyers guide to grass-measuring equipment

There is a range of grass-measuring equipment and software on the market, which means choosing the right one can be a minefield. Farmers Weekly looked at a range of measuring…

MACHINERY

3 top-selling solar-powered fencers on test

Electric fences have been a reliable ally for farmers looking to keep livestock in or vermin out, but their usefulness has always been hobbled by the capacity of run-of-the-mill batteries.…

MACHINERY

3 solar-powered fencers compared

Whether it is keeping livestock in or vermin out, electric fencing has been an important part of the farmer’s armoury for a long time. The drawback for isolated fields has…

LIVESTOCK

A guide to buying and installing cow tracks

Any dairy farmer serious about making the most from grass needs to install suitable cow tracks around the farm. That is the advice from DairyCo grazing expert Piers Badnell, who…

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Video

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

How to ‘home-test’ grass to know when to cut for silage

With late application of fertiliser and slurry to crops this spring, it has never been more important to test grass before cutting for silage. Excess nitrogen is a risk in…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Video: Should you do a full reseed or renovate pasture?

In most cases, if a sward is past its best, there is no substitute for ploughing. However, overseeding can also be beneficial. In the video below, Germinal’s Daniel Loe sets…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Video: How near-infra red technology measures grass quality

Near infra-red spectroscopy (NIRS) technology is helping grassland farmers produce better quality silage by pinpointing when grass is at the optimum nutritional value for harvesting. At Grassland & Muck 2017, Limagrain demonstrated…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Buyers guide to grass-measuring equipment

There is a range of grass-measuring equipment and software on the market, which means choosing the right one can be a minefield. Farmers Weekly looked at a range of measuring…

See all