With S&W forage cereals, the winter feed gap is filled - Elders Rural Services
Millie Moore territory manager, inspecting the new S&W Overland production seed paddock at Ivan Schulz farm in Bordertown SA.

With S&W forage cereals, the winter feed gap is filled

Forage cereals play a major role in filling the ‘winter feed gap’ when the growth of summer pasture slows in the north, during the cooler months on tablelands and slopes, and prior to spring pasture growth in the south.

S&W Seed Company Australia offers a wide range of forage cereals, including the newly released Severn Forage wheat, an awnless winter wheat.

Multiple options and new releases

Graziers can plant Severn in early autumn, switch to Overland oats or Bronco Forage oats, then plant Kraken Forage barley in early winter, depending on their location.

In 2022, S&W Seed Company Australia Overland Forage oats will replace Outback Forage Oats. Overland has improved tiller production and a wide leaf, with the same mid-to-late maturity as its predecessor.

Bronco Forage oats has consistently demonstrated high performance and rust resistance after several years of testing. Bronco is a mid to late maturity forage oat suitable for northern New South Wales and throughout Queensland. Bronco has shown good emergence under warmer soil conditions, and is quick to first graze with good recovery, making it suitable for multiple grazings throughout the season.

In the later part of the growing season, when some earlier varieties had already set seed, Bronco can continue to produce excellent tiller numbers to provide grazing and hay options.

Forage barley will provide a faster to graze or later sowing option for grazing enterprises, complimenting forage oats and winter wheat. Kraken is a two-row awnless forage barley with a better leaf disease package and a later flowering schedule than Moby Forage barley.

Kraken Forage barley matures much quicker than oats or wheat, so it can be planted in late autumn to obtain multiple grazings or in late winter or early spring for hay or silage only.

Rob Verrall, a hay producer in Warrill View, Queensland, trialed Kraken in 2020. Rob reported that “Kraken had green leaves to the bottom of the plant, providing consistent hay in the bale.”

Severn Forage Wheat for early grazing

Vernalization is required for winter wheat to become reproductive and produce a grain head. Severn Forage wheat is a tall awnless winter wheat that exhibits a dense tillering habit early, making it ideal for grazing, hay and silage.

Depending on the sowing time and the season, Severn can be grazed multiple times before terminating the crop at the end of spring. If the situation changes, stock can be removed sooner with the option of cutting for hay or silage at the end of the season.

Severn’s sowing time, growth habit, and disease resistance, which includes resistance to the new Eastern Stripe Rust pathotype affecting other varieties,combine to  make it an excellent choice for grazing, hay, and silage.

A 28 hectare paddock of Severn was sown on 31 March by Klori Pastoral Company under the guidance of Elders Tamworth senior agronomist Tony Stewart.
The paddock was stocked with 600 ewes and lambs on 1 June and continually grazed until they were removed on the 14 August.

“We’re pretty happy with it, reported Mr Stewart.

“We planted it early, ran the ewes and lambs on it and it looks like it’s going to return a good grain yield.”

Article written by S&W Seeds for Seasons magazine. 

A range of S&W Seeds are available from your local Elders store.

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