Green Manure Crop combined with Pasture Cropping
On our farm “The Gums”, we are renovating a tired paddock next to our yards. This paddock is constantly over-grazed and is used as a sacrifice paddock when handling animals. We first chisel ploughed the paddock and green manured the existing pasture with biological sprays. Four weeks later we planted millet seed, cow peas and vetch in the middle of December. By early February, the crop had matured enough to mulch as you can see in these photos. We mulched down to a height of approximately 40cm with a Flail mower. Four weeks later, the crop has regrown and is producing a seed head. Our plan in the coming weeks is to wait for the seed to mature, then we will mulch again with the Flail mower to ground level. We will then pasture crop into the stubble with oats and a variety of pasture seeds. We will update this process with more photos.
We would like to stress that no chemical was used during this process. We use biological sprays to enhance the breakdown of green matter into the soil. The whole process is to feed the soil, build carbon, make nutrients available and build resilience back into this paddock. The plant material will not be removed from the paddock via grazing or baling, it will all be returned to the soil and mineral cycle to establish a strong and viable pasture for many years to come.