Conserving a Herbal Ley

I forgot to say that Cotswold Seeds are also good for the CS mixtures too.

In the 1st year we cut (2018) I couldn’t believe the yields we were getting because it was new and there was undoubtedly some remaining Nitrogen fro the previous arable crop. Last year was good, but also affected by the droughts. The rain in June last year gave us a hell of a 2n’d cut in September.

This year we cut and tedded on Monday, left it Tuesday, then rowed it 6 mower widths into 1 on Wednesday. It was practically hay, but wrapped because I haven’t got a shed to put it in.

Same field 2018
View attachment 890364
View attachment 890365
Changed the Mower then. ;)

So you are in effect, treating it as a conventional grass crop for harvesting purposes, no issues with loss of leafy material with a gentle tedding and raking I'd hope. Where I have had haylage crops with a lot of clover leaf, I mow and start the raking in process early, before the leaves become too dry and brittle.

What do you feed the fodder to? Should be some rocket fuel...
 

Two Tone

Member
Mixed Farmer
Changed the Mower then. ;)

So you are in effect, treating it as a conventional grass crop for harvesting purposes, no issues with loss of leafy material with a gentle tedding and raking I'd hope. Where I have had haylage crops with a lot of clover leaf, I mow and start the raking in process early, before the leaves become too dry and brittle.

What do you feed the fodder to? Should be some rocket fuel...
Yes, treating it as a conventional grass crop except no fertilisers. I ted it early to reduce leaf losses or for the September cut, don’t ted it at all.

I feed it to our Red Deer in Winter. We used to shut up some of their fenced fields to make their fodder on. Now we have increased the herd size and make their fodder on the MTS land. The clover is a huge bonus quality wise and they eat more of it to help keep their weight up.

Also yes, I hate mounted mowers and vastly prefer trailed ones.

More photos of this years crop belong baled;
453EA5CC-16C0-4E21-B9B8-7BD5F1A01C82.jpeg

EEC6C1EE-011D-4850-8307-F1793BB3495A.jpeg
 
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Yes, treating it as a conventional grass crop except no fertilisers. I ted it early to reduce leaf losses or for the September cut, don’t ted it at all.

I feed it to our Red Deer in Winter. We used to shut up some of their fenced fields to make their fodder on. Now we have increased the herd size and make their fodder on the MTS land. The clover is a huge bonus quality wise and they eat more of it to help keep their weight up.

Also yes, I hate mounted mowers and vastly prefer trailed ones.

More photos of this years crop belong baled;
View attachment 890378
View attachment 890379
Aha, it's a commercial herd of Deer.. They must really pile on the pounds on the herbal haylage! (y)

You take it off quite short??

The more I see and read on the topic, it confirms my belief, that a good sized mower conditioner will be vital. I don't see the acreage next year warranting a spend, so will get a Contractor in with as large a cut as I can find. Then bale, after as little work on the crop as I can get away with. ;)
 
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O'Reilly

Member
If cutting in June in dry weather, I wouldn't turn it at all if you are wrapping it. The bales might be a bit heavy, but if you do get a hole in the wrap from a chicory stalk, or bird damage, the mould won't go through the bale as much. Get a hole in a dry bale, and it's mouldy as a dog turd across most of the bale. The chicory stalks won't be so tough if they're fresh too.
 

holwellcourtfarm

Member
Livestock Farmer
If cutting in June in dry weather, I wouldn't turn it at all if you are wrapping it. The bales might be a bit heavy, but if you do get a hole in the wrap from a chicory stalk, or bird damage, the mould won't go through the bale as much. Get a hole in a dry bale, and it's mouldy as a dog turd across most of the bale. The chicory stalks won't be so tough if they're fresh too.
Agrees with what I've found.

It makes bloody good silage and the cake go mad for it. I can understand too, virtually TMR in a wrapped bale.
 
If cutting in June in dry weather, I wouldn't turn it at all if you are wrapping it. The bales might be a bit heavy, but if you do get a hole in the wrap from a chicory stalk, or bird damage, the mould won't go through the bale as much. Get a hole in a dry bale, and it's mouldy as a dog turd across most of the bale. The chicory stalks won't be so tough if they're fresh too.
So, MoCo, and the Fusion in 24 hrs later....? (y)
 

Fast Farmer

Member
Livestock Farmer
We used Cotswold seeds aswell, put them into a vicon fert spreader and spread onto one of our fields in early spring, the field has never been ploughed only ridge a furrow, it produces the best hay on the whole farm and the amount of wildlife it supports is crazy, you can see the mower covered in insects when you come home after cutting. Our Herefords and galloways fatten just fine without conventional corn or cattle feed, also the seeds pass through the cattle and move onto other parts of the farm, or we spread the muck after winter which is also spreading the seeds.

I think more farmers should be using more flower mix grasses and move away from rye grass...
 

Samcowman

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
Wiltshire
We used Cotswold seeds aswell, put them into a vicon fert spreader and spread onto one of our fields in early spring, the field has never been ploughed only ridge a furrow, it produces the best hay on the whole farm and the amount of wildlife it supports is crazy, you can see the mower covered in insects when you come home after cutting. Our Herefords and galloways fatten just fine without conventional corn or cattle feed, also the seeds pass through the cattle and move onto other parts of the farm, or we spread the muck after winter which is also spreading the seeds.

I think more farmers should be using more flower mix grasses and move away from rye grass...
Did you graze the field with cattle after spreading the seed to tread in or did you just let it do its own thing?
 
...... Our Herefords and galloways fatten just fine without conventional corn or cattle feed, also the seeds pass through the cattle and move onto other parts of the farm, or we spread the muck after winter which is also spreading the seeds.

I think more farmers should be using more flower mix grasses and move away from rye grass...
Trad breeds, bred over generations to finish off grass based diets.... and taste good (y)
 

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