According to the new BSPB Recommended Grass and Clover List for 2013/14, white clover variety Violin not only has the highest dry matter yields, but also demonstrates the ability to persist in both rotational and intensive grazing situations, making it a very versatile clover for inclusion in many types of grass ley, says Limagrain’s Ian Misselbrook.
Mr Misselbrook explains: “Typically, large- leaved clovers are suitable for silage mixtures and grazing by cattle, but they are not a good choice for sheep as they do not withstand the intensive grazing – or heavy defoliation – caused by the sheep’s grazing habit. Violin’s leaf size is classified as medium, so it is at the large end of this category and it could be expected to have poor persistency under heavy defoliation.
“However, the results on the Recommended List show that is not the case. Despite its leaf size, Violin scores above average for ground cover under heavy defoliation, both in spring and autumn.
“This demonstrates that Violin is suitable for both intensive grazing by sheep and rotational grazing by cattle. As a larger leaved variety it is also suitable for cutting leys.
“Moreover, Violin is a very high yielding variety. In the Recommended List trials, clovers are grown together with grass, and yields are measured of total herbage as well as clover alone. The total herbage dry matter yield of Violin in the second harvest year was 11% more than the average of all white clover varieties, and in the third year, 7% more.
“The DM yields of Violin alone were 48% more than the average in the second harvest year, – that’s an extra 2.09t/ha of dry matter yield. And Violin gave an extra 0.83t/ha of DM more than average in the third year.” See table 1.
Table1: Performance of white clover variety Violin on the new 2013-2014 Recommended List for Grass and Clovers
||Mean average of clover varieties
|Leaf area (length x breadth mm2)
|Cutting/Rotational grazing (light defoliation)
|2nd harvest year:Total DM yield of clover and grass
Total DM yield of clover
|3rd harvest year:Total DM yield of clover and grass
Total DM yield of clover
Violin is already included in Limagrain’s pelleted white clover blend Cloverplus, and will now be added into the rest of the company’s clover blends. Violin is also available from most good seed merchants.
Further information is available from Ian Misselbrook on 01472 371471 or firstname.lastname@example.org