• Philip

Cutting more grass

“Michael O'Leary was waiting at the bus stop with his friend, Paddy Maguire, when a lorry went by loaded up with rolls of turf on it.

O'Leary opined, 'I'm gonna do that when I win de lottery, Maguire.'

'What's that, Michael?' responds his mate.

'Send me lawn away to be cut,' concludes O'Leary.

How many kilograms of grass seed do you plant / acre?

The answer – commonly 14 kg which makes a seed rate of 34 kg/ha.

How many plants of grass do you need to make a successful sward?

Well empirical data is a little hard to obtain but we could consider 2 to 3000 tillers good enough for a productive silage crop. At 4 tillers per plant that means 500 to 750 plants / m2.

So how many seeds in 1 kg of Diploid Ryegrass? Let’s say 500,000. Divide this by 10,000 sq m to obtain seeds per 1 m2 and we have 50.

We have just planted 34 kg/ha so that means 1700 potential plants. On that basis with a target of 750 plants our survival rate is around 45% and with 500 plants around 33%.

Why these survival rates?

Experience shows that under consolidation of the seedbed results in poor water availability for young seedlings and they simply die.

#grass #irishjoke #sward #silage #ryegrass

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