Forage Focus Friday - SS HPPM

by Speare Seeds

Horse Pasture and Paddock Mixture

Paddock vs. Pasture

As a horse owner, there is nothing better than watching your horse grazing on a thick pasture that is void of weeds and consistently produces throughout the entire grazing season. With horses being flight animals, they are sensitive to movement and sounds so when they are first turned out from their stalls, their fast movements can cause damage to productive pasture fields. This is where a paddock area, usually about an acre in size, is a great place to turn out your horse before allowing them into larger pasture fields. With the foot traffic being concentrated to a smaller area, the higher cost of continuously overseeding larger fields is reduced.

The Right Seed Mixture

Our newly reformulated SS Horse Pasture and Paddock mixture (SSHPPM) is an “all grass” mixture containing the right blend of the best pasture grasses, perennial rye grass, Kentucky bluegrass, endophyte free tall fescue, timothy, orchardgrass and festulolium.  Forage type Kentucky bluegrass (KBG) is a high quality, highly palatable sod forming grass that spread out by growing under ground rhizomes that fill in damaged areas to form a tight knit sod.  Forage KBG also tolerates close and frequent grazing. Forage perennial rye grass provides high nutritive quality and palatability.  The seeds have excellent seedling vigour and produce well in the spring and fall.  Orchardgrass, also a bunch grass, produces well throughout the entire grazing season.  When grazed before heading out, it produces continuous growth of a leafy grass.  Forage type endophyte free tall fescue is a long-lived perennial that is tolerant of soil acidity, lower soil fertility and is relatively tolerant of drought and close grazing.   

Convenience is Key

The SS HPPM comes in 25 kg. or 10 kg. bags. At full seeding rate of 25 lbs/ acre for a new paddock, the conveniently sized 10 kg. bag seeds approximately 1 acre or 2 acres for over seeded areas. The larger 25 kg bag seeds approximately 2.5 acres of new fields.  

Seeding Equipment Options

Grasses prefer to be seeded shallow, ¼ to ½ inches deep (6-12 mm) Emergence declines when seeds are planted greater than ¾ inches deep. With all seeds, ensuring the proper seeding depth and having good seed to soil contact is crucial for maximum emergence. Pack seeder such as a Brillion seeder consist of a front roller that firms the soil and provides proper seedling depth. Seeds then are meter dropped in front of a second roller that further firms the soil to ensure good seed to soil contact. Broadcast seeders such as ATV spreaders are an economical way of distributing seed. Controlling the amount of seed delivered can be more difficult but manageable. Packing with a roller or sprocket packer before and after seeding can help control seeding depth and provide good seed to soil contact. No till drills can be used to cut through existing sod to drop seeds into a depth-controlled slot that is packed after dropping. Planting when the soil is dry on the surface will provide better slot closure and increased seed to soil contact.   

Click here to view the tech sheet.