Plantain

Forage Use: Grazing Dairy, Beef, Horses, Sheep, and Dry Hay

Plantain is a mineral rich perennial grazing herb that is high in protein, up to 23%. It is fast establishing and will be productive and persistent over a wide range of soils and climatic conditions because it has both a tap and fibrous root system. It adapts well to drier regions, less fertile soils, low pH, and heavy clay soils. It responds well to fertilizer, especially nitrogen. Digestibility, (80%), and energy levels, (12MJME), are high with lamb weight gains of 0.55 pounds. Plantain fits very well into grazing mixes and has excellent regrowth as well as very high digestibility.

Establishment

Plantain is not recommended for sowing in monocultures but can be sown with a multiple grazing brassica at 4-6 lb./A; with a permanent pasture mix at 4-8 lb./A; and up to 10 lb./A as a specialist crop with legumes. It can be broadcast over existing pasture, no-tilled, or conventional drilled.

Management

It is ready to be grazed when the leaf tears before the plant pulls out. Pre-emergent weed control is important as plantain is susceptible to broadleaf herbicides after emergence. It is ready to be grazed when the leaf tears before the plant is pulled out. Yield data shows over 6 tons of dry matter for well managed plantain.

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