The average growth rate this week was 39kg DM/ha. Predicted growth rates over the weekend range from 25kg DM/day in Mayo to 34kg DM/day in Meath and Westmeath.

Getting area grazed and closed in October allows the farm to recover and build grass for the spring before growth rates fall.

This autumn, growth rates have far exceeded the 10-year average at this time of the year, but growth is now slowing as more unsettled weather arrives.

Shorter daylight hours and colder nights will slow growth considerably.

Many farms have now finished or are nearly finished the heaviest covers on the farm. Low dry matter percentage will mean cows will go through lighter covers much faster.


The target is to have 60% to 70% of the farm grazed by the end of October.

For farms stocked high with a high six-week calving rate or a dry farm that cows and cattle can get out early should aim to have 70% closed by 31 October.

The autumn rotation planner can be done on Pasturebase Ireland (PBI). The total farm area is simply divided over the number of days and there is a set area to be grazed each day.

It is important to assess what area of the farm has been grazed and closed so far

As we move closer to the end of October it is important to assess what area of the farm has been grazed and closed so far.

If you find you are ahead of target, increase meal or silage feeding to reduce demand. Reduce the daily allocation of grass to ensure grass remains in the diet for longer.

If you are behind target, reducing supplementation will increase demand and get more area grazed.

Where heavy covers are still being grazed, it can be slower to get ground grazed. In this case, by grazing a few light covers, you can get back on target.

The remaining 30% to 40% will then be grazed while possible in November.