We are delighted to announce the winners of Luisetti Seeds Paddock of the Year for 2010 are Richard and Fiona Maw. Richard and Fiona farm a 250ha dryland arable finishing farm between Methven and Mt Hutt.
The winning crop is a paddock of Brigadier fodder beet. The four hectare paddock was drilled on the 2nd November 2009 with a precision drill at a rate of 80,000 seeds per hectare (approximately 2kg). 250kg of DAP, 100kg Pot.Chloride, 100kg Magnesium Oxide and 25kg Sodium Chloride were applied.
Approximately six weeks after sowing, between the cotyledon and six leaf stage, the paddock was, as Chris Sparks termed, ‘minced’ by heavy hail. With special care paid to the timing of three herbicide applications, using a combination of Glyphosate, Expo, Betenal Forte and Goltix, and with the help of some favourable weather conditions, the beet was able to make a strong recovery.
The final yield was 32 tonne per hectare, measured by the Methven A & P Association. The crop also won a cup for the best beet paddock at the Association’s Winter Feed Competition as well as a silver tray for the Association’s overall winner. Therefore, the Maws’ now have two cups along with a tray to put them on.
125 cows have been on the beet for three weeks and are being given 10kg dry matter of beet, 2kg dry matter of straw and 2kg dry matter of silage per cow per day. The cows looked very contented. One hectare of beet has been enough for 125 cows for the last three weeks. Richard and Fiona also had a very impressive paddock of Onward peas which yielded over 4.5 tonne/ha. The peas were over the lane from the fodder beet, but were completely untouched by the hail. We congratulate Richard and Fiona on a great effort.