Rushes

Discussion in 'Grassland Management' started by OliverD, Oct 21, 2018.

  1. OliverD

    OliverD Member

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    Any advice is welcome on this.

    Have a field that years ago grew oats for a number of years and then was used for silage for years. Over last few years has been grazed with little to none fertiliser and no slurry.

    Rushes have started to come up in places and bad enough in a few places.From soil analysis it doesn’t read as needing lime.

    Anyway I plan to lime it and slurry it now and start putting out a 18-6-12 with sulphur in the spring.

    Is there anything else I should be doing?
     
  2. Rusty Spade

    Rusty Spade Well-Known Member

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    If it doesn't need lime, don't put out lime. All you're doing is raising the soil pH and reducing nutrient availability and grass growth and paying for the privilege. I would only apply lime to that ground if I was reseeding to neutralise the acids from the breakdown of the older grasses in the soil

    Once the pH is OK, what's the P and K levels like? You need to be pushing them up to index 3 on that ground. Well fertilised ground will grow more grass and compete better with rushes and any other weeds in the ground. Also, cut that ground at least once per year for silage if you can and twice a year is even better as that will use up any reserves the rushes built up and will almost be rid of them in 3 years.

    Spraying is another option but I'll leave someone with more experience of spraying than me to answer that question.
     
  3. jf 850

    jf 850 Well-Known Member

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    Welcome Oliver.
    It would sound like it's run down. What were the soil test readings?
     
  4. Mf240

    Mf240 Well-Known Member

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    Slurry In a hurry. Some slurry and then another bit of slurry. Some slurry would be a help too. That and keep them cut.
     
  5. OliverD

    OliverD Member

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    Thanks everyone.

    The NPK index is 122 from the soil test and a local old fella was telling me it grew oats as long as he could remember. We took it out of silage and probably neglected it a bit to be honest. Have the slurry ready to go - good and heavy and have dung as well.

    Thanks for the tip on cutting it - only when we didn’t cut it did he problem show up
     
  6. johndeere6920s

    johndeere6920s Well-Known Member

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    Spray them normally totally gets rid of them
     
  7. massey 6480

    massey 6480 Well-Known Member

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    As mentioned above spraying the rushes works well. And if you look after the ground after spraying it . With fert / slurry the rush that will come back will be minimal .
     
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  8. diesel power

    diesel power Well-Known Member

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    Land that's used for silage won't have rushes. There not able for the low cutting a silage sward has and it wipes them out after a few cuts/years.
     
  9. lough

    lough Well-Known Member

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    I have a field that I reseeded a few years ago and took two cuts of silage of it since. It was always grazed before that. There was always rushes on the lower bit and none on the higher bit that was a few inches of soil on top of rock. I had to stop cutting the lower bit the rushes got that bad and there are rushes appearing on the dry bit where there was never any before:scratchhead: I'm not convinced that cutting is any good.
     
  10. CORK

    CORK Well-Known Member

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    If it grew oats then it can’t be bad in terms of soil quality.

    I’m surprised that it doesn’t need lime if there are rushes there, especially after such a dry year.

    Are there drains that need attention? Blocked drains might be making it wetter than it should be.
     
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  11. johndeere6920s

    johndeere6920s Well-Known Member

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    Continually cutting them wont get rid of them anyway I mulch places a few times a year and they stay growing.
    Theres a dairy farm over the road that have a field with alot of rushes in it.
    Everytime the cows come out of its topped.
    There still growing as long as I remember.
    Theres a reason they grow and its either acidic soil or waterlogged
     
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  12. diesel power

    diesel power Well-Known Member

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    Thats unusual now. I've a few fields here with rushes and topping them every year was a waste of diesel and time. This year I cut them to the skut with the mower and there fairly thin and sparse now. There's one very wet corner and it never grew anything but rushes and since introducing the mower there's grass with a few rushes and not the other way round. 18:6:12 is also the only fert for this type of ground.
     
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  13. Mf240

    Mf240 Well-Known Member

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    . If you look ahead you can see a triangular bit that wasn't mowed when the rest was as there was and old fence and other bits in it. The whole field was like that bit. It was drained last year and mowed and slurried this year. IMG_20181013_162308.jpg
     
  14. bruceythom

    bruceythom Well-Known Member

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    I'd agree with @Mf240 and I'd also spread a bit of slurry on it. Rushes don't like being farmed, nutrients, lime and a mower will give them the hint, got rid of them here that way anyway, and no spray used.
     
  15. Rusty Spade

    Rusty Spade Well-Known Member

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    Wouldn't oats being grown there point a bit towards a lower pH. Oats are more tolerant of lower pH soils than Barley, if my memory is serving me well?
     
  16. nashmach

    nashmach Moderator

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    Had to use spray here but definitely agree with you Bruce and MF240, a heavy coat of dung here worked wonders.
     
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  17. OliverD

    OliverD Member

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    Well we mowed the bad parts and then horsed the MCPA on. Put 2 tonne lime on all over it and more in the part parts last Wednesday. Plan monday to put on as much slurry as we can get on it and will close it up and see how it is in the spring. Will let ye know if still above ground
     
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  18. johndeere6920s

    johndeere6920s Well-Known Member

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  19. Blackwater boy

    Blackwater boy Moderator

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    In relation to what Tom? Chemical abuse?
     
  20. dstig

    dstig Well-Known Member

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    Just on the slurry thing, is it recommended to put out slurry after spreading lime? I think you have to wait about 3months before you can spread slurry, where as if you spread slurry first then you can spread lime 10days later
     
  21. OliverD

    OliverD Member

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    Your right dstig. The theory is you lose a lot of the nitrogen by spreading straight after lime but we’re up against it here deadline wise. We did it before a few years ago and was chatting with the uncle about it and he didn’t think we lost too much by it. We have loads of rushes on the ground from mowing them and he tells me they’re great source of nutrients and should balance out any loss.
     
  22. OliverD

    OliverD Member

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    Got the slurry on today, drowned them in it and it good concentrated stuff. Have closed it up and see how we go. Have a few sheep and will put them in it after Christmas.
     
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  23. johndeere6920s

    johndeere6920s Well-Known Member

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    Anything that poaches it usually makes them grow.
    Did you say you limed it.
    I see where cattles hoof goes down a rush comes up
     
  24. OliverD

    OliverD Member

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    I seen areas where we patched land with cattle in the past and 2 years later it was full of thistle. Takes a bit to get rid of them. We have wet enough land in places and have to mind it.

    Here is one - am I better going with 18-6-12 or 10-10-20 in the spring for the land with the rushes. Don’t need to graze it too heavily next year and Need the slurry for elsewhere. Any advice appreciated.
     
  25. diesel power

    diesel power Well-Known Member

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    Either or are very good fertilizers on that type of land. 2 or3 bags to the acre of 10:10:20 in the spring and top up with 18:6:12 during the summer if the grass needs a push. Straight N doesn't really respond as well I've found on marginal ground whereas the 2 mentioned above usually get great results.
     

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