Forage Maize Seed - Growing Quality Feed for Cows
Our interest in Forage Maize seed arises from the belief that forage quality is key to the performance of high yielding dairy cows.
Starting with the right variety of forage maize seed is a major factor which determines the nutrition of the forage maize when it is fed to the dairy cow.
Richard Webster Nutrition supplies a wide range of outstanding forage maize varieties sourced from a number of top maize breeders.
We believe our top varieties offer clear advantages for dairy farms.
Why RWN Forage Maize Varieties are best?
- The importance of good maize variety selection cannot be over emphasised. The true value of a variety can be measured by starch produced per hectare and percentage starch content, but much more importantly by total energy yield. This is the product of dry matter yield / ha and energy density of the whole maize plant.
- Total Dry Matter Yield / ha is by far the biggest factor in determining the cost / tonne of dry matter of growing forage maize. A 20% increase in yield is equivalent to a 20% reduction in the cost of growing maize. Yet much of the UK market has become focused on growing relatively lower yielding Maturity Class 10 and 11 maize varieties prone to early die back.
- Far too much emphasis in the UK has been placed on whole plant dry matter and starch percentage. Quality and feed value is influenced as much by NDF and fibre digestibility as it is by starch. The range of digestibility on approved maize varieties can account for 1600 litres of milk per ha, or £400 / ha income.
- Cob ripeness or early cob maturity is far more important than percentage dry matter of the whole plant (Maturity Class), which is often influenced more by premature die back of leaves than it is by early cob ripeness.
- On marginal UK sites and in cool seasons, varieties with good early vigour allow the maize crop to get away fast and form a crop canopy early, making full use of our longest days of sunlight and highest temperatures during the early summer period. Every extra days growth in June is worth two in October. In order to maximise yield we need as much green leaf as possible from germination right through to cob maturity and harvest.
- Official trials are usually on very good sites. They sow maize relatively late and harvest all the varieties at the same time. This approach consistently under estimates dry matter yield, starch percentage, energy value and earliness, of some of the best modern high yielding forage maize varieties, with excellent early vigour and good stay green characteristics. On many marginal, commercial sites, some of these varieties consistently out perform some of the official top listed maize varieties. We look for varieties which get away early, have early cob ripeness and stay green to make full use of late season sunshine consistently producing very high yields.
- RWN Forage Maize Varieties are selected for good Early Vigour, Whole Plant Digestibility, Early Cob Ripeness, Starch Yield together with consistent high Dry Matter Yields over a wide range of sites and conditions.
- Selecting forage maize varieties for early cob ripeness with stay green characteristics gives a wider harvest window. This avoids the problem associated with many early maize varieties, of rapid die back producing excess dead material with high populations of yeast and moulds, rapid dry down, over ripe grain, poor silage consolidation, poor silage fermentation and unstable, heating maize silage full of mycotoxins.
- RWN Maize Varieties grown commercially on marginal and very marginal sites, have regularly out performed other maize varieties, at times by as much as 30%, and giving yields on occasions well over 25 tonnes / acre. We have seen yields much higher than the so call Ultra-Early varieties and cob-ripeness on marginal sites usually similar to or at most within about 7 days of the very earliest varieties.
- Open sown these big yielding RWN Maize Varieties have generally easily out yielded maize sown under plastic on marginal sites. Although the maize sown under plastic has been up to 2 weeks earlier on cob maturity it comes with a reduced yield and the £130 / acre cost of the plastic .
- Having selected the best variety, attention to detail is needed to realise the varieties potential. Getting forage maize off to a good start with rapid establishment can have a massive impact on yields. A whole range of factors are involved including: site selection, sub-soiling, seed bed preparation, sowing date, crop rotation, fertiliser and nutrient requirements. Every year we see large acreage's of maize are sown well after the optimum sowing date as well as suffering from inadequate weed control and nutrient deficiencies especially with potash, sulphur and nitrogen.
RWN Forage Maize Seed
Over a number of years Richard Webster Nutrition has been trialling a range of the most promising new forage maize varieties with the potential to reliably produce very high yields along with very early cob ripeness, high whole plant digestibility and good starch levels.
We have found that often top varieties on the national lists have not performed as well as expected on commercial, less favourable sites, whilst some other varieties have performed better than the top listed varieties.
Our additional commitment to sourcing the best varieties for our customers has enabled us to offer maize varieties which consistently out perform maize from many other suppliers.
Very high yielding forage maize varieties with early cob ripeness
We place great importance on selecting varieties that perform well locally rather than relying on official trial data alone. By trialling across a large number of commercial farms locally we aim to continuously upgrade our varieties to provide farmers with outstanding results designed to both reduce the cost of growing forage maize and to improve the nutritional characteristics of the maize silage in the pit.
RWN Forage Maize Varieties - satisfy our selection criteria for reliability, early vigour, high yields, early cob ripeness, high starch yields, exceptional digestibility and energy yield per acre with good standing power without premature die back.
With the cost of land, fertiliser and other inputs increasing the cost of growing forage maize can only be controlled by growing higher yielding varieties and growing them well.
See more information on Making the Most of Maize
We are confident that our best new forage maize varieties will prove far more profitable for farmers to grow than many other varieties currently available.
RWN Maize Seed Range includes some of
The Best New and Tried and Tested Maize Varieties
For more information and to order your maize seed, contact Richard Webster.