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Information note concerning the 2015 Grass and White Clover recommended list

Four new varieties on 2015 Grass and White Clover Recommended List.

The Crop Evaluation and Certification Division of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) have just published the Grass and Clover Recommended List of varieties for 2015.

The List is now available for free download from the ‘Publications’ section on the Department’s website: http://www.agriculture.gov.ie/publications/2015/

Three new perennial ryegrass varieties and one new white clover variety are recommended for the first time this year.

Irish breeder Teagasc provides two of the new grass varieties; a Late heading diploid named Glenroyal and a Late heading tetraploid variety named Solas. German breeder Deutsche Saatveredelung AG (DSV) provide a Late heading tetraploid named Astonenergy. Teagasc provide the new white clover variety named Buddy.

The new grass varieties continue the recent trend of improved varieties in the Recommended List with increased yield potential combined with good spring and autumn yield performance. The new medium leaved clover variety competes well with the accompanying grass.

Performance data based on a Simulated Grazing (frequent cutting; 8 to 10 cuts per year) trial system is provided for nearly all of the perennial ryegrass varieties in the Intermediate and Late heading groups. It supplements the data based on a General Purpose 2-Cut Silage (i.e. 6 cuts per year, including two silage cuts) trial system, which is available for all varieties.

Outclassed grass varieties removed from the List are the Late Diploid varieties Denver, Soriento, Portstewart and Malambo and the Late Tetraploid variety Glencar.

Each year DAFM test over 100 varieties of grass and white clover in replicated trials at five locations throughout the country. All new candidate varieties are tested against existing commercial Recommended List varieties over a minimum of two sowing years with each sowing harvested for two years, giving a total of four harvest years. Trials are grown on good quality soils in a manner conducive to selection of varieties most suited to good commercial farming practices.

Farmers should give preference to recommended varieties unless there is strong evidence that some other variety is more suited to their conditions.

Using Recommended List varieties to reseed old and degraded pasture, in conjunction with appropriate soil pH and fertility will:

  • Increase grass dry matter output per ha;
  • Improve response to fertiliser, especially Nitrogen;
  • Extend the grazing season in spring and autumn;
  • Improve animal performance; and,
  • Increase profits.

For further information on the DAFM Grass and White Clover Recommended List 2015 please contact: david.cummins@agriculture.gov.ie