To support a planned increase in breeder numbers on the 400-hectare beef cattle property ‘Pepper Hill’ in west Gippsland, Alan Simpson knows he needs quality pasture.
“We’re building our cow numbers up to about 450 breeders and as part of that process, we also need to renovate with pasture on the property,” Alan explains.
“We’re currently doing a lot of pasture renovation using Mach 1 annual ryegrass from Stephen Pasture Seeds, and then two years later that country is sown down to permanent pastures.”
Good pastures – both annual and permanent - are a critical part of the Willow Grove operation for a number of reasons, not only allowing more stock to be run, but also driving weight gains in cattle.
In 2017 Alan sowed 80 hectares of Mach 1, with his rotation meaning around 50 hectares is planned for 2018.
“The performance of Mach 1 has so far definitely warranted it remaining part of the program here on ‘Pepper Hill’,” he says.
“While most paddocks will be sown down to permanents after a couple of years, I will look at doing some area of Mach 1 every year as it provides good winter feed for fattening cattle.”