Improve Pastures by Frost Seeding Clover
Do the pastures you depend on for feed need to be taken to the next level?
Ideally, there should be 30 – 50% legumes in a pasture, depending on what kind of livestock is being raised.
What to Overseed
Consider overseeding 4 – 10 pounds per acre of Gallant Red Clover and/or 1 – 2 pounds of Kopu II White Clover. Late February through mid March is a great time to seed clover into pastures, ideally when it is freezing at night and thawing during the day. This will increase the chances for seed to soil contact. Hay and Graze Clover Mix is a combination of both Gallant Red Clover and Kopu II White Clover.
How to Overseed
If the ground is ready to be driven on, a no-till drill will do the job.
The seed can be broadcast alone, with fertilizer, or drilled – if conditions allow. Seed to soil contact is imperative for good establishment. Consider “overgrazing” the areas you want to reseed to help improve seed to soil contact by removing the excess forage. The freezing and thawing of the soil will help move the broadcasted seed into the soil for better germination. The clovers can also be drilled when it is dry enough to drive on the field but the pasture has not broken dormancy yet.
IF THE GROUND IS READY TO BE DRIVEN ON, A NO-TILL DRILL WILL DO THE JOB.
Use Coated Seed
Consider using coated seed when broadcasting. The coating gives the seed more density and it “flies” better out of the spreader. The coating material also has hydroscopic properties to absorb moisture and aid germination. Coated seed also guarantees excellent nodulation as the rhizobia bacteria is placed right next to the seed.
Remember, nitrogen produced from these plants is always cheaper than nitrogen from fertilizer.
Here’s the Result of Overseeding/Frost Seeding
GALLANT RED CLOVER IS AN EXCELLENT FEED FOR LIVESTOCK AND AN EXCELLENT SOURCE OF NITROGEN FOR GRASS. AS YOU CAN SEE FROM THIS PHOTO, GALLANT WORKS EXTREMELY WELL WITH BOTH TEKAPO AND PROFIT ORCHARDGRASS.