Soil quality key to boost grass output

Getting soil Ph right is the most important factor to maximise fertiliser usage and grass production, says Teagasc soil researcher David Wall.

He urged farmers at a dairy seminar in Boherbue, Co Cork, to maximise their grass growth and grass utilisation, and to increase their financial knowledge of their business.

He advised dairy farmers to apply lime to correct low soil Ph, based upon results from soil sampling.

Dr Wall said: “To achieve maximum grass growth, soil Ph should be over 6.3, even in high rainfall areas.

"Soil tests from dairy farms show that over 63% have a soil Ph less than 6.3 which is less than optimum for grass growth.

"Getting soil Ph right is the most important factor to maximise fertiliser usage and grass production.”

Diarmuid Donnellan, AIB agri adviser, demonstrated the concept of ‘Break Even Price’.

For this, the farmer adds up farm costs, personal drawings, loan repayments and taxes and divides by total milk output.

He said this exercise should be completed on all farms.


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