Overseeding Fescue

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Aaron9876
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Overseeding Fescue

Postby Aaron9876 » Mon Jul 17, 2017 6:58 pm

Hello all,

I've recently begun cleaning up pastures which by appearances have been neglected for many years. The pastures are currently mainly fescue presumably E+ with some scattered timothy and orchard mixed in. I've been mowing off the grass since last summer but its still pretty thin.

I am looking for some input on my pasture renovation plans...(North Missouri)

I plan to build/buy a drag harrow and run it over the pasture later this summer, soil test & lime+fert., then broadcast overseed the pasture with a Novel Endophyte variety of fescue. It certainly will not remove all of the E+ fescue but i hope it will reduce its quantity while helping to fill out the pastures. I plan to oversee with novel fescue over the next several years at a light seeding rate in the hopes of further reducing the E+ concentration.

Fast forward to winter ... plan to frost seed ladio/red clover over the fescue. It seems to grow pretty well around here and from what ive read it compliments fescue very well.

I realize that the official method in Missouri is spray/smother/spray for eliminating E+ fescue. However, id rather not go through all that effort and cost not to mention loss of production if i could just overseed few times and get similar (maybe not as good) results with less effort over a longer period of time.

I guess my intent is to "improve" not to fully renovate...

Anyway...thoughts, advice, more advice...lets hear it.
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dun
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Re: Overseeding Fescue

Postby dun » Mon Jul 17, 2017 7:14 pm

My recommendation is to learn to work with the endophyte fescue. Dilute it with red/white clover. The main issue I see with combining them is if the novel endophyte stuff is more palatable then the old KY31 they will eventually over graze the new stuff and you will still have the old stuff. That will put you several years behind on learning to work with the old stuff which is where you will probably end up anyway. Save your money and drill plain old KY31 and frost seed clover.
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Ol' 243
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Re: Overseeding Fescue

Postby Ol' 243 » Mon Jul 17, 2017 7:25 pm

dun wrote:My recommendation is to learn to work with the endophyte fescue. Dilute it with red/white clover. The main issue I see with combining them is if the novel endophyte stuff is more palatable then the old KY31 they will eventually over graze the new stuff and you will still have the old stuff. That will put you several years behind on learning to work with the old stuff which is where you will probably end up anyway. Save your money and drill plain old KY31 and frost seed clover.


Excellent advice.
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Re: Overseeding Fescue

Postby coachg » Mon Jul 17, 2017 9:43 pm

We have tried the endophyte free fescue , it does ok for a couple of years and dies out. Go with good ole Ky 31 and plant clover, orchard grass and other types to thin the effects of the fungus. You may get lucky and get Ky 31 without the fungus .
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dun
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Re: Overseeding Fescue

Postby dun » Mon Jul 17, 2017 9:52 pm

coachg wrote:We have tried the endophyte free fescue , it does ok for a couple of years and dies out. Go with good ole Ky 31 and plant clover, orchard grass and other types to thin the effects of the fungus. You may get lucky and get Ky 31 without the fungus .

The endophyte free stuff is a failure. The novel endophyte is much better for persistence. I have no idea how long the novel stuff will lay dormant in the soil. We have one field that was planed in endophyte some 70 years ago. The previous owner burned it down and planted sudex for 2 years. After we bought the place we planted winter wheat for a cople of years. Burned it down 2 years in a row and planted WSG mix. The WSG really took off and did well. That was 10 years ago. The field is now about 50% fescue, 20% clover nad 30% WSG.
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Aaron9876
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Re: Overseeding Fescue

Postby Aaron9876 » Mon Jul 17, 2017 11:21 pm

My thoughts were that novel fescue and clover would be about the only things that could survive in a fescue stand.

Good point about the cattle eating the novel over the E+...

I just need something to help fill out the fields...maybe i should just keep grazing and mowing until they fill themselves out...and just add clover as suggested...since they are currently thin it seems like a good time to try to sneak some better grass in there before the impenetrable fescue sets in...

still open to suggestions...i'm sure there alot of people who have this problem would like to hear advice...

If i do decided to overseed with novel what would be the best time to fertilize and or mow to help the new seed sprouts over the existing stand...or is that even possible?
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Re: Overseeding Fescue

Postby dun » Tue Jul 18, 2017 12:07 am

Something to consider is buying KY31 and leaving it for a couple of years before seeding it. You will lose some germination but the seed will also lose some of it's toxicity so the ensuing plants will be less toxic.
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