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Drinagh reseeding demonstration highlights options and benefits

September 13th, 2017 7:12 AM

By Southern Star Team

Drinagh staff and guest speakers at the reseeding demonstration and family day at Shepperton, Skibbereen – from left – Michael Connolly, Marian Young andTim Regan, Drinagh Co-Op; Denis Harnedy, host farmer; Don Crowley, Teagasc West Cork; Dr Michael O'Donovan, Teagasc Moorepark; Seamus Daly, Drinag

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THE Drinagh Co-Op Reseeding Demonstration and Family Day, which took place on the farm of Denis and Fiona Harnedy, Shepperton, Skibbereen, proved to be a huge success as it highlighted the different options and benefits of reseeding.

The event gave all attendees a first-hand opportunity to meet industry experts and to see how different cultivation and sowing methods work. 

These methods included a conventional plough, till and sow system, a disc harrow cultivation system and a direct seeding system. Opening the event, Drinagh Co-Op chairman TJ Sullivan addressed the large attendance and acknowledged all those involved in making the event possible. 

Expert guest speakers from the Irish farming industry were on hand to give advice on all the key topics around grassland reseeding.

Dr Stan Lalor of Grassland AGRO discussed the importance of obtaining good soil structure and soil fertility levels. He focused on choosing the correct cultivation methods in order to achieve the best results.

Dr Mary McEvoy of Germinal Seeds spoke on the importance of choosing the right varieties. Dr McEvoy stressed the importance of selecting only the best-performing varieties on the Teagasc Pasture Profit Index and Department of Agriculture recommended list when choosing a grass seed mixture.

Don Crowley of Teagasc West Cork explained the economics of reseeding and laid emphasis on the increased grass growth capacity through more productive reseeded swards. Don also discussed the role of disc harrow cultivation where soil compaction is not an issue.

Dr Michael O’Donovan of Teagasc Mooorepark discussed the influence that proper seedbed preparation has on seed establishment. Local contractors, Brian Lawlor and Martin Coakley, were asked to give their opinion on the ideal seedbed and the overall agreement was that a fine, firm seedbed was the best approach to achieve optimum seed establishment.

Finally, a group discussion took place around pasture rejuvenation and direct seeding. All previous speakers, in addition to contractor Robert Ellis, gave their input on the principles of direct seeding – tetraploid varieties, correct soil fertility and weed management were all discussed.

Dave Barry of Goldcrop gave a detailed presentation across seven trial plots. These trial plots compared different cultivation and sowing techniques. 

There were also plots treated with different post-emergence herbicides showing the advantages of proper weed control in new reseeds. The trial plots allowed for an interactive discussion between the audience and Mr Barry, where some excellent points were discussed.

As well as a live reseeding demonstration, there was also children’s entrainment throughout the day. Leading companies from across the country had trade stands present. 

Alan Shannon and the Drinagh catering team provided an excellent service, serving delicious food and refreshments to all who attended throughout the day.

It was a very successful day, with a large number of people attending. Each guest speaker brought a wealth of information on the key topics of reseeding and all contractors added some very practical knowledge to the event. 

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