When we look at pasture growth for your business we have top first look at the five main procedures that will help you achieve this. These four main procedures are:

1. Map grazing land.

2. Seasonal rainfall patterns.

3. Build and maintain soil nutrients.

4. Pasture Species composition. 


 We will briefly review these four main procedures before assessing them in more detail.

1. Map grazing land: When mapping grazing land you should divide the land into pasture zones based on land class and capability. To do this you should:

  • Create accurate maps to assist withb precision planning.
  • Manage each pasture zone carefully to achieve full productivity potential.
  • Map pasture zones
  • Know what to measure and when to measure it.


2. Seasonal rainfall patterns: It is important for pasture growth that you can characterise the seasonal pattern and variability of rainfall and establish water use efficiency. To do this you must:

  • Build a record of the farm's annual total and normal monthly rainfall distribution.
  • Use long-term rainfall records to determine the annual pasture production from grazing land.
  • Understand the water cycle and what happens to rain after it falls.
  • Understand Plant available water capacity for different textures.
  • Apply information about water use efficiency.
  • Use different tactics for managing the soil surface.
  • Know what to measure and when to measure it.


3. Build and maintain soil nutrients to improve soil fertility and health in all pasture zones: Nutrients are a very important element and are key when growing a good pasture. To ensure that you build soil nutrients and improve soil fertility you must ensure that:

  • You balance major and micro-elements for productive pastures and healthy soils.
  • Take care with fertiliser application rates and placement to reduce product losses. 
  • Use the P-Tool (functions are outlined in subsection 3 under procedures) to support your thinking and fertiliser decisions. 
  • Soil health, organic matter and earthworms are an important factor in building and maintaining soil nutrients.
  • Know what to measure and when to measure it.


4. Manipulate the pasture species composition in each pasture zone for best possible growth and quality: This helps you to assess the current pasture base and this will also help you to outline what improvements you can make and what to consider when introducing a new species. To ensure this you should:

  • Recognise the most important peremnnial and native pasture species.
  • Avoid costly resowing by ensuring nutrient and grazing practices support persistence of existing desirable species.
  • Use grazing systems that will encourage and maintain pasture productivity.
  • Improve pasture management to avoid resowing.
  • Manipulate the species mix to achieve the right pasture composition.
  • Take corrective action if pasture composition is inadequate.
  • Know what to measure and when to measure it.