NovaChem > Industry News > 2023 > Smart science boosts autumn covers

Smart science boosts autumn covers

Published on 28/04/2023

If pasture covers are not trending the way they should be, however, the good news is that there’s no better time to re-set the system.
The most cost-effective way to
do this is with farm-grown feed. It’s cheaper than imported supplement, and it’s more efficient too.

One technique that can help is
applying ProGibb SG in early autumn. New Zealand’s first and most widely tested plant growth regulator lifts pasture production by 30-50 per cent more DM in just three weeks.

There’s another factor to con
sider about this - provided existing soil nutrient levels are sufficient to support plant growth, ProGibb SG generates extra pasture yield with no requirement for extra nitrogen fertiliser. This potentially opens an opportunity for more efficient use of existing soil N in pasture, without sacrificing pasture yield.
The principle here is akin to that
for catch crops, as studied by the Forages for Reduced Nitrate Leaching (FRNL) project, i.e., the faster and more actively a plant grows, the more soil N it absorbs to support that growth.

Nufarm trials have repeatedly shown that the level of nutrients in ProGibb treated herbage is very similar to, or the same as, that of non-treated herbage. So
we know that the extra pasture growth stimulated by ProGibb utilises available soil nutrients the same way ‘normal’ pasture growth does.
If farmers are growing 30-
50 per cent more DM per ha, and the nutrient levels present in that extra DM have not been diluted by the increased daily growth rate, the logical assumption is that they are utilising existing soil nutrients more efficiently.
In any case, getting the best out of ProGibb SG in autumn is all about planning ahead.

Autumn applications differ from those in spring because grass growth patterns are reversed. In spring, daily dry matter growth is speeding up, but in autumn it is slowing down and farmers need to fac
tor that into their schedules.
For optimal results:

1. Be prepared to adjust your grazing rotation if necessary. Treated paddocks will grow significantly more DM
than normal and may need to be grazed out of order.

2. Spray ProGibb SG onto pas
tures within five days of grazing. One to three days after grazing is best.

3. Soil temperatures should be
7-13 deg C.

4. Always use Contact Xcel sur
factant. There’s not much leaf area left straight after a pasture is grazed – Contact Xcel helps ProGibb SG stick to what herbage is present. Nufarm trials show there is a response difference of 10-15 per cent between ProGibb applied on its own, and with Contact Xcel.

ProGibb SG is easy to mix and
apply to pastures. There is only one rate – 20 g per ha, plus 25mL Contact Xcel per 100 L of water. The ideal water rate is 100 litres per ha. ProGibb SG is a water dispersible granule.

For more detail contact your lo
cal Nufarm territory manager.

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