Give it Jivet like Hugh

May 5, 2021 by SW Seed Company

Hugh Foletta works as a contractor in the Adelaide Hills, as well as running his own small block for hay and sheep grazing. With years of experience under his belt, he’s seen the seed industry shift from common varieties through to proprietary products.

Hugh started with lucerne seed when he was based in the south east of South Australia, and in the past 2 years, he too shifted from commons to proprietary products. In 2019, Hugh opted to sow S&W Seed Company Jivet Annual Tetraploid Ryegrass as an alternative to his usual “off the shelf” ryegrass/oat blends. Unfortunately with the dry finish to the season last year, Jivet was not given a true time to shine. However, he sowed a further 7 acres this year at 20 kilograms per hectare, which happened to be an ideal time for a late-maturing ryegrass.

With a dry spell in June and July, Hugh was concerned as record lows and numerous frosts tested the paddock, but the early vigour and large tetraploid leaves of Jivet allowed it to establish and power through the dry spell, taking advantage of all growth opportunities. Hugh was able to allow the sheep graze for a short time at the end of July when other paddocks were struggling, before the paddock was shut off for hay.

The wet spring is where Jivet really came into its element – while contractors were scrambling to cut other ryegrasses varieties as they were losing quality, Jivet was still maintaining quality and a lush green leaf, easily lasting into the summer and taking the pressure off. “This allowed me to focus on cutting my earlier paddocks, leaving the Jivet to continue to utilise late Spring rains before cutting in late October”, said Hugh.

Management is key for hay crops, with soil tests performed last year to establish the need for 3 split nitrogen applications throughout the season due to previous seasons of ryegrass and oat crops – many growers opt for the inclusion of clover in the paddock, which can often reduce nitrogen demand and further boost dry matter yields.

Hugh’s experience shows that you don’t have to be a large-scale grazier to reap the benefits of S&W Jivet. Sowing just one paddock with Jivet Annual Tetraploid Ryegrass can significantly boost feed availability in the winter and increase hay yields in the spring. It’s an ideal option for any grower looking to diversify their rotation, and provide a later feed opportunity when many other ryegrasses have already finished for the season.

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