Want to establish new pasture

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Apr 2, 2015
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I am in Central Texas. I have had oats planted on my pasture for the last two years. This year I would like to put the pasture into coastal.

What is the timeline/procedure for getting a field ready to sprig later this spring? The soil is blackland. The pasture is in oats now but it did not come in very well this year. Looks like it only germinated on 40% or so.

Thanks in advance for any guidance.

I'd be looking at why you only got 40% germination with the oats first. Was it water related, birds if not covered or nutrition? First thing I'd do would be a soil test.

I did a soil test before planting and fertilized to what was indicated.
The planting was a month late this year as the farmer who did the work was behind getting cotton harvested elsewhere.
I am hoping to get to a perennial forage so that I do not have to disc and re-plant every year.
I agree with Brute on Tifton 85. Research at the TAMU research center at Overton, TX has shown Tifton 85 to produce about 20% more forage than Coastal. T-85 also has shown to have higher digestibility than Coastal. I had the opportunity to hear Dr Glen Burton speak at a field day. He said "Tifton 85 is a better grass and if anybody should know, it is me. I developed both of them". That quote has stuck with me since the early 1990's.

Now to your time schedule: You will need to disk your land again in March and prepare a seed bed for the sprigs. For coastal, you want to be through by tax day - April 15. For Tifton 85, you want the grass to green up and start to grow so it will be in May before you plant. Once sprigs are in the ground, you need to roll the ground to press the sprigs in and seal off the soil to prevent soil moisture loss. You will also want to look at what herbicides can be used to control broadleaf weeds on newly sprigged grass. Pray for rain.

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