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David Gannon Galway - Grass 10 Featured Farmer


Wet weather over the weekend forced our hand and we had to house cows fulltime, however we had a great run up to that and apart from a few wet days, we got consistent grass in by day for the first 3 weeks of November. Read David Gannon's update on autumn grass management and clover evaluation

Name: David Gannon
Location: Craughwell, Co. Galway
Enterprise:  Milking 153 cows
Stocking Rate: 2.9 LU/Ha on MP
2021 Annual tonnage: 14 T DM/ha

We oversowed and reseeded a number of paddocks with clover so I was concious to keep a lower cover on these over the winter, so I have been grazing these paddocks during early November. The key to the extended autumn grazing was getting the AFC to 1135 Kg DM/Ha in late September which carries me through to mid November.

Average Farm Cover is a little lower than where it normally would be at 630 Kg DM/Ha, but I am confident that this will be over 700 Kg DM/Ha on the 1st December and 950-1000 Kg DM/Ha in early February. 

By the weekend I will have about 15% of the herd dried off and will milk once a day for December. The cows are milking 1.2 Kg MS per cow per day currently @ 5.89 Fat and 4.32 Protein.

Diet: 15 KgDM Silage + 3 Kg Meal 
Average Farm Cover (AFC): 630 KgDM/ha
Cover/cow: 279 KgDM/LU
Growth: 25 KgDM/ha/day
Annual Tonnage YTD: 14.4 T DM/ha
2022 Total Chemical N/ha: 147 Kg N/ha

Clover Paddock Evaluation

Below is the summary of the clover paddocks, with the N recieved and tonnage grown for 2022. I have been very encouraged by the results from this year and intend to incorporate more clover into my swards in 2023.

PaddockMethodN receivedTonnage grown
Paddock 4 Oversow 159 Kg N/Ha 14.9
Paddock 31 Oversow 160 Kg N/Ha 15.3
Paddock 33 Reseed 102 Kg N/Ha 15.35
Paddock 34 Reseed 99 Kg N/Ha 11.1
Paddock 35 Reseed This year 7
Average   147 Kg N/Ha 14.3

Soil Fertility & Farm Roadways 

I have put a big focus on improving the K levels on my farm, as its critically important to the long term success of grass clover swards. A number of paddocks received 50 units of K per acre, while some other paddocks that had a lower worm count recieved farm yard manure. I will soil sample the farm again on the 1st week of January. I also will improve some farm roadways by cleaning verges and top dressing in a few areas that take alot of traffic. I will install some astroturf where the cows enter the collecting yard.