Open day tomorrow on making ‘quality’ second-cut silage

A demonstration in making quality second-cut silage is set to take place tomorrow, Friday, June 28, in Urlingford, Co. Kilkenny.

The demonstration will be held on the farm of John O’Dwyer in association with Teagasc and will start at 11:00am.

According to a spokesperson for the event, on the day, there will be a grass-silage crop on display that is ready for harvesting following six weeks’ regrowth.

A total of four speakers have been confirmed for the event:
  • Joe Hand and Sean Cooney: Potential of second cut to lift farm profits;
  • Louise Pierce: Getting the quantity/quality balance;
  • Bernadette Bennett: Preserving leafy silage swards in mid-summer.

Also to be discussed at the second-cut silage event will be the potential weight gain of cattle on this silage next winter.

Hand stressed that there is “a big difference” in the economic return from high-quality silage compared to the poor returns from low-quality silage.

Hand noted that emphasis will be placed on soil fertility. Ahead of the first cut, the field being used in the demonstration was soil sampled and fertilised accordingly. However, half the field was deliberately missed with the top-up fertiliser.

He explained: “We found a 50% increase in yield by getting the phosphates and potash levels right.”

All are welcome to attend the event and directions to the location will be signposted from Mary Willies’ pub – between Thurles and Urlingford.