Over the years John has tried a large number of other perennial ryegrass varieties but always comes back to ONE50. “It is very persistent for a ryegrass and is hard to beat for outright yield versus other grasses on the platform,” John explains.
ONE50 diploid perennial ryegrass has been a solid performer across New Zealand since its release seven years ago. Being a medium leaved, late heading ryegrass (+20 days relative to Nui), ONE50 is an ideal fit for a dairy farming system as it has excellent spring quality with its flush coming during mid to late spring. This is followed by outstanding summer, autumn and winter growth particularly with the AR37 endophyte.
John emphasises the importance of choice in endophyte, along with the choice in cultivar as he needed an option that can stand up to the significant insect pressure in the area. Initially, John tried ONE50 AR1 which controlled Argentine stem weevil. However, he soon realised he needed the increased insect protection provided by the AR37 endophyte. The combination impressed and John’s conclusion was simple: “It just grows more grass than AR1.”
AR37 endophyte has a very high level of resistance to many pasture insects. AR37 is effective against Argentine stem weevil, porina, black beetle adult, pasture mealy bug and root aphid. ONE50 perennial ryegrass combined with the AR37 endophyte results in very good insect control, allowing ONE50 to reach its genetic potential without the additional pressures of insects resulting in high on farm yields. This combination has ensured that John can confidently use ONE50 AR37 to achieve consistently good yields and achieve his spring demand of 65 kgDM/ha/day.
John Wright isn’t the only one seeing the benefits of growing ONE50 AR37 on farm. ONE50 has been extensively trialled with multiple endophytes throughout New Zealand as part of the National Forage Variety Trials. The data from these trials contribute to the DairyNZ Forage Value Index (FVI), rating cultivars from 1 to 5 stars.
In the national summary of the NFVT, ONE50 AR37 is now significantly out yielding ONE50 AR1 for total yield. The FVI used this data and puts an economic value on the different pasture production achieved between different trial entries. Both products have been in a large number of trials (confidence rating 10+) and the difference in seasonal dry matter production between these two products has led to a difference in star rating.
ONE50 AR37 has a five star value while AR1 ONE50 has a three star value. This difference in star rating reflects a predicted economic difference per ha, per year depending on region for using AR37 over AR1. According to DairyNZ, farmers should ideally use cultivars that are a minimum of three stars in the FVI to maximise farm profit.
ONE50 AR37 has proven to be an attractive investment option that can be used to increase on farm production and increase overall robustness of the forage base of the farm.