The Two R’s Of Maintained Pasture25 June 2014
US – Graziers are being reminded to make note of the ‘two R’s’ of pasture management – residual leaves and rest period.
Ohio farmers should leave at least four inches of residual plant cover and aim for an eight to ten inch grazing height before returning cattle to pasture.
This is the message of Rory Lewandowski, an agricultural educator at Ohio State University, who adds that pasture division is helpful in managing livestock grazing.
“Pasture divisions allows the livestock manager some control over grazing height, plant selection and plant rest or recovery periods,” said Mr Lewandowski.
“The more pasture divisions you have, the more control that can be exercised over these factors.”
As a rule of thumb, look to create eight to ten pasture divisions or paddocks, he added.
This assists in pasture monitoring and allows grass to be grazed and rested to appropriate levels and for sufficient lengths of time.
He emphasised the importance of leaf coverage for soil protection against heat.
“Make sure that leaf cover is left after a grazing pass,” he added. “Cooler soil temperatures and retained moisture will help cool season grass to grow better longer into the summer period.”
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