Wednesday, March 6, 2019

4 tips on how to nurture your grassland

Spring has come and it is now time to take a critical look at your grassland. Fortunately, there are several different things you can do to correct the potential damages after the winter


These 4 tips will help you safely through the process

  1. Even out molehills and push down stones
  2. Rake withered grass and distribute it to the whole field
  3. Check the field for bare spots and count number of plants
  4. Consider the need for sowing or reestablishment



A level grassland ensures better yield

All over Europe, moles have been busy during winter and in springtime, they are extremely busy in their tunnels. Molehills often create problems like soil in the silage and in wrap bales, and they are also very had on the knives of the mower.

By leveling the molehills and pushing down stones, the surface becomes more level and easier to go over with the mower or a weeder. If the grassland is used for the production of silage, a level surface will also reduce the amount of soil and spores in your end product.



Spreading withered grass optimises the conditions for growth

You can obtain great advantages by raking and distributing withered grass onto the entire field. This way, sunlight and air can reach the living plants, and you will create better growth conditions for the plants that have survived throughout the winter. 

A weeder is a good machine for this job


If you want to save time and work, you can combine process 1 and 2 by using a roller with longfinger tines and a leveling board/lamelar towing bar. The leveling board / lamelar towing bar will remove molehills and the longfinger tines will rake the withered grass and create the necessary light and air for the living plants. The roller will pack the soil and push down stones and create a level surface.

The roller could look like this. Just make sure that the leveling board does not damage the grass by squeezing it too hard. If your grassland consists of white clover, make sure that the longfinger tines do not rip off the nodes by going too deep.



check the grassland for spots

After a cold winter, you will almost inevitably get bare spots in your grassland. It is therefore a good idea to check the field in early springtime in order to ensure best possible yield. As a guideline, maximum 5% plants should be missing on fields with regular grass and maximum 10% should be missing on fields with clover.



overseeding or reestablishing the grassland

In case of many big spots, it is recommended to overseed the field in early springtime - sometimes already in March (for countries in Europe). On light soiltypes, a combi-seeder with sowing coulters and roller will ensure good seed-to-soil contact. On sticky and clayey soiltypes, a seeder with disc coulters will be able to do the job nicely.


Alternatively, using a grass roller mounted with a seeder, longfinger tines and perhaps even a leveling board/lamelar towing bar can mean significant time savings for you. In one pass you can level the surface, rake and distribute withered grass, place the grass seeds and pack the soil afterwards. Here's a roller with longfinger tines and a seeder.


In some cases, the grass cover will be in such a poor state that it is necessary to reestablish the field completely.


See our selection of grass-rollers here

HE-VA grass-roller