This week, the average growth rate has fallen further to 18kg DM/day. Grass dry matter remains around 12% to 13% across the country. At this stage cows and cattle have been housed for the winter on many farms.
Continuing to graze now should be done with caution and only if you are sure that by doing so does not mean you fall short of your target average farm cover on 1 December.
Having enough grass in the spring is far more valuable than an extra couple of days at grass at this stage of the year.
Farmers who have been recording grass measurements throughout the year should take the time to assess the 2021 grass year over the next few weeks.
Reports such as the annual tonnage report and the farm summary report can be used to look back at the farm’s ability to grow grass and how well the grass is being managed.
Knowing the tonnage grown in each paddock over the year is one of the huge benefits of grass measuring. This allows you to pick out under-performing paddocks and make changes to management practices.
Combining your annual tonnage report with soil sample results will help structure a nutrient management and reseeding plan going forward.
The farm summary report breaks the information down to the year to date, spring, summer and autumn.
Some key figures to look for on this report are the number of covers recorded, number of grazings per paddock, the average pre-grazing yield and opening and closing covers. These figures can all be used to assess the year and come up with a set of targets for the 2022 season.