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Independent Grassland Consultants and Seedsman
A clover sward is an attractive sight, when in full bloom. Making your fields interesting to humans, palatable to grazing animals and a haven for Bumble Bees, Honeybees and other insects and wildlife.
Many pests attack only certain plant species, so a mixed sward can withstand attack easier.
By adding Nitrogen to your land but also by improving the soil tilth due to the way that Clover grows
Clover provides homegrown slow release nitrogen, provides pollen and nectar for Bumble bees, Honey bees, and food for other wildlife.
The total yield of forage per acre from a grass/legume mixture is usually increased over grass alone. A clover/grass mixture is especially likely to increase dry matter yield as compared to grass alone that receives little or no nitrogen fertilizer.
The introduction of clovers into grass pastures often extends the grazing season as compared to grass alone. Overseeding a cool season annual legume on a warm season perennial grass pasture permits production of quality feed during winter and early spring when such pastures would otherwise be unproductive.
The forage quality of legumes, including clovers, is generally higher than that of most forage grasses. Legumes are usually higher in crude protein, digestibility, and many minerals and vitamins. They also are digested more rapidly than grasses and tend to stimulate increased intake. The result is better performance of grazing animals in terms of higher gains and higher reproductive rates.
You were probably thinking that the increased cost of nitrogen fertilizer makes this the number one reason. It has stimulated more interest in clovers. Like most legumes, clovers have the ability to obtain nitrogen from the atmosphere and "fix" it in nodules on the roots. The amount of nitrogen fixed varies depending on species, stand density, fertility, weather and the extent to which the clover has been defoliated.
The use of clovers can have an enormous positive impact on the economics of raising grazing animals. Nutrition is generally recognized as the primary limiting factor on most livestock farms, and legumes usually provide higher nutrition levels than grasses. Better nutrition means more milk production, higher weaning weights, and increased likelihood of high reproductive efficiency. These factors obviously impact gross income.
Clovers also help reduce or eliminate the requirement to apply nitrogen fertilizer, which typically accounts for 20 to 40% of the cost of producing forage from grasses. Often the value of nitrogen fixed by clovers will alone more than offset the cost of clover establishment. Greater Feed Value - a higher digestibility, protein content and mineral content than grass only swards, ruminant livestock may consume 20-30 percent more with a white clover, grass sward than grass alone.
Reasons why you should use Red Clover: