Spring Reseeding Options for Forage

Feb 10, 2020


Spring is a good time to replenish a lost forage stand or to establish a new stand by interseeding perennials or annuals into existing grass. Your local Co-op carries some great options from Allied Seed, a company partially owned by the Co-op system including FSG 506 Orchardgrass, Select Tall Fescue, and Derby Timothy.

To improve existing orchardgrass stands or establish a new one,  FSG 506 Orchardgrass, an early- to medium-maturing variety, provides improved vigor, high yield potential and excellent disease resistance.

Select Tall Fescue, a low endophyte variety, is an excellent choice for establishing a new fescue stand. This low-endophyte variety eliminates concerns that grazing animals will develop fescue feeding disorders.
Derby Timothy is an early maturing variety that provides quicker spring green-up and improved summer re-growth
compared to other varieties.

Here’s seven steps to successful pasture reseeding.
  1. Take a soil test. Apply fertilizer based on these test results but NOT before you have planted the seed, and it is 2 to 3 inches tall. Fertilizing before you plant will only feed remaining weeds. A pH of 6.3 or above is preferable.
  2. If you have weed issues remove them before you plant.
  3. If your stand is less than 60 percent of the overall desired forage, consider killing out the existing stand and starting over with bare ground.
  4. While fall is the optimum time for establishing cool season forages, spring will work if you plant by mid-March in Tennessee.
  5. Don’t skimp on seed. Plant 125 percent of the recommended rate per acre. Do it right the first time.
  6. Plant when good moisture is available.
  7. The last and extremely important tips is to plant at the right depth — from 1/8 to 1/4 of an inch.
Call your local Co-op or TFC regional agronomist for more information.
 

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