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The Perfect Legume for Alkaline Soils

Sainfoin

The Perfect Legume for Alkaline Soils

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How Does Sainfoin Meet Today's Needs?

A silage or hay crop with grazing aftermath for dry, alkaline soils, there are few crops like sainfoin. It is a high-yielding, drought-resistant plant which needs no nitrogen fertiliser and little phosphate. It won’t cause bloat, is a natural anthelmintic and, with rumen protected protein, produces top quality meat and milk.

Sainfoin has deep penetrating roots making it highly suitable for the dry, alkaline soils of England. In these times of fluctuating feed and veterinary drugs prices, alongside increased environmental demands, there are few crops that tick as many boxes.

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Sainfoin Seeds...

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Sainfoin Four Year Cutting or Grazing Crop

Ref: SAI
Sowing rate: 35 kg per acre (87.5 kg/ha, 8.75 g/m²)

On the right ground this is a superb crop.  Lasting 4 years or more it is extremely valuable for finishing lambs due to it's high protein content, but it also has a number of other medicinal benefits for all types of stock.  It's tannin content ensures improved utilisation of protein by the animal, and also it is a natural wormer, reducing worm polulation both in the stock and in the field.  Tannins also prevent bloat, so feeding sainfoin as part of a legume rich diet can eliminate the risk of  bloat too.  With very deep roots sainfoin is very drought tolerant so dry, free draining soil you will struggle to beat it.  Sainfoin (also known as Healthy Hay) makes high quality hay and can also be ensiled or grazed.

Sow sainfoin with the optional 'Grass Option' mixture to help weed suppression and also bulk-up yield in the first year.  If ordered, the grass should be spun on seperately after the sainfoin has been drilled, due to the vastly different seed sizes.  Click here to see the grass option mixture.

A sainfoin ley should be managed carefully. Sainfoin produces a cut of silage in early June. Hay may be taken if preferred. Sainfoin should be cut during early flowering but may be delayed without much loss of feed value if needed. Regrowth is less than for the first cut and may be cut again or grazed. Grazing should be light and quick to avoid damage to the plant. Never set stock it or it will become thin.  Sainfoin seed can be undersown to spring cereals or direct drilled in April or May at around 30mm. (If undersown the cereal sowing rate should be reduced to 40 kg per acre.) 

Sainfoin can be used as part of your greening measures, as a 'pasture legume' or a 'nitrogen fixing crop' option.

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acres

Contents

35.00kg (100%)
commercial Sainfoin
87.5 kg (100%)
commercial Sainfoin
1 kg (100%)
commercial Sainfoin
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Grass Option

Ref: MIXLUC
Sowing rate: 3 kg per acre (7.5 kg/ha, 0.75 g/m²)

We recommend the use of a non-competitive grass mixture to be sown with lucerne/Sainfoin. There are several advantages, but the right balance between the species must be struck. The grasses increase the total yield of forage, especially in the first cut as the grasses start growing in advance of the lucerne/Sainfoin. If silage is the objective, as it is for most growers, it is easier to obtain a good fermentation because the grass supplies the necessary soluble sugars. Grasses also fill the base of the crop, therefore providing competition against weeds which enables lucerne/Sainfoin leys to be left down for an extra year or two. Sow grass and lucerne/Sainfoin seed at 10 mm.

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acres

Contents

2.00kg (66.7%)
certified COSMOLIT meadow fescue
1.00kg (33.3%)
certified ERECTA timothy
5 kg (66.7%)
certified COSMOLIT meadow fescue
2.5 kg (33.3%)
certified ERECTA timothy
0.67 kg (66.7%)
certified COSMOLIT meadow fescue
0.33 kg (33.3%)
certified ERECTA timothy