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Graze and grain canola: the crop that keeps on giving

Natimuk farmer Brian Klowss.

In 2019, Natimuk farmer Brian Klowss planted canola in April like he normally would, but instead of being finished with it at year’s end, he continued to get reap gains from it until April 2020.

That’s because he planted graze and grain canola – a dual purpose type that keeps on giving.

Mr Klowss owns and manages 3200ha property Arapiles Plains where he runs Merinos for wool and grows cereals, vetch, clover and canola.

Recently, he also ventured into Merino breeding via his own stud to diversify risk.

He said the dual-purpose crop has been extremely valuable to his operations.

“We grazed the canola three times and harvested 1.6t/ha average from it, so the feed value itself more than paid for the crop.”

Growing season rainfall was recorded at 280mm.

He sowed 30ha of Hyola 970CL on April 4 at 3kg/ha with 100kg/ha of MAP.

On June 10, he applied 140L/ha of UAN, then on July 20 he applied 600mL/ha of Intervix and 100L/ha of UAN.

In early June, 840 weaned lambs grazed for five weeks and gained 2.5kg each over that time.

On December 16, he harvested the crop for an average yield of 1.6t/ha and 46pc oil, which made for an oil bonus of $600t/ha.

The lambs were back on the crop in late-December, with 300 grazing for eight weeks, gaining 2.4kg average each.

Then in March, 300 ewes went to lamb down for six weeks.

Mr Klowss calculated the combined value of the weight gain, grain harvest and oil bonus at $1607/ha gross.

“We’ve grown triazine tolerant and regular Clearfield crops here, but the Hyola 970CL just keeps going and the feed value is unreal.

“We’ll plant it again this year.”

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Featured Image: Natimuk farmer Brian Klowss.