Robin Talbot: we will draw on the stores of barley silage to beat shortage

  • Robin Talbot: we will draw on the stores of barley silage to beat shortage
    FarmIreland.t. E.
    I heard someone say last week that hope is not a plan, so his advice is have a plan and hope it works.

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I heard someone say last week that hope is not a plan, so his advice is have a plan and hope it works.

At this stage, we know that we have only 60pc of the pit silage that we will need for the winter.

However, we are in the fortunate position that we have managed to save an extra straw and handle and store extra barley, which we will use to compose the diet for the shortage of feed for cows with calves.

We received the results of our silos last week.

Cut, taken in mid-may is SD 31pc, DMD from 82pc and protein 17pc. The corresponding figures for the cut taken in late may, 40 PCs, 72pc and 16pc.

Usually, we will feed the best silage for fattening cattle, but perhaps we have to reconsider this year.

If we have to save on the amount of silage fed to the cows given the fact that our breeding season from late October to December, maybe they should get better things.

The land here is still very dry. The big rain seems to pass us by. Though everywhere there are green, until we saw a surge of grass growth.

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We spread a blanket on 30 units of nitrogen per hectare in the form of pasture Herbage.

The land that was fertilized, intended for second cut silage, but in the end that hurt, seems to grow best at the moment. So I guess a lot of fertilizer, that there was a drought coming available to plants, moisture deficiency in the soil reduces.

Because our high demand for grass in spring and autumn, now our main priority is the creation of a Bank of grass if at all possible.

We are not going to take any second-cut silage. It would tie up too much land and put us under too much pressure to keep enough grass in front of cows and calves.

But, if the opportunity presents itself, we will take some bales at every opportunity we can get them.

If we could return 4-5 bales from some paddocks, it would help. I especially don’t want to go too heavy on the way out, because I know it will take too much time for re-growth to get up and re-install.

Our main priority is cows and calves.

About 40 cows now calved. 40 PCs must be splits before the end of the month.

Still, it went smoothly, with a night feeding works a treat.

In some real hot days, we moved recently born calves indoors for the first few hours. I felt the heat stressing them out, and I was worried about them getting sunstroke. But they were fine the next day and we let them back on the field.

For yearlings, which are designed for under-16 month beef is still open.

We introduced them feed on August 1, a month earlier than usual, but I felt they were a little behind where I would like them to be and they lacked grass.

At the moment, they are getting 4-5 kg silage, 0.5 kg straw and 6 kg of a mixture of barley, oats and molasses. I hope we will be able to add wheat, which in a few weeks.


While the weather remains like this, they’re probably much happier outside than inside.

At the moment, we work in a barred house that was built in 1984.

The pillars, the troughs are attached to is completely rusted at ground level.

This meant that we had to make a compressor to put 10 inches of post below the level of the concrete. Part of the column, which was enclosed in concrete is not as good as it has been set.

Now I plan to weld in a solid plate on the outer side of the affected supports.

Our spring barley will be cut and made a very unfavorable 2T/acre.

With winter barley 3.6 t/acre, we seriously doubt that we will again grow spring barley.

Due to the fact that the year works, we reported very little liquid on the grass. So, last week, all winter stubble barely received 3,000 gallons/ acre of slurry.

It was circular in style after the distribution.

We also share one small field of grass with a trailing Shoe. I must say I was very impressed with the work that he did.

The first thing on my list for plowing to see what’s available in this technology and feasibility of retro put it on our own tanker.

Robin Talbot farms in partnership with his mother pam and his wife Ann in Ballacolla, County Laois.

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