How to make the most of Amigain red clover
Amigain is the latest generation red clover; bred in New Zealand for increased persistence and performance in permanent pastures, high performance short-term pastures, silage mixes and pure sward red clover stands.
In a pasture mixture, Amigain provides spring, summer and autumn productivity ideal for increased animal performance, enhancing pasture management and fixing nitrogen. And as a specialist multi-year crop, Amigain provides high quality feed ideal for sheep and deer systems. Here’s a look at some key features and benefits, information on how to manage it, and how it performs against other varieties.
Key features and benefits
- Exceptional liveweight gains*
- Bred to persist and perform in both pasture mixtures and pure stands
- Semi-prostrate growth habit to enhance persistence
- Excellent quality suitable for driving animal production
- Selected for a more fibrous root system
- Lower formononetin (oestrogen) levels than older varieties (see graph over page)
- Increased clover root weevil tolerance compared to white clover
- Latest generation, New Zealand bred red clover selected from Georgian, Portuguese and Spanish genetics
*94% increase in lamb liveweight gain of red clover relative to ryegrass and white clover. Reference: (Kemp, Kenyon and Morris, 2010) Massey University.
Sowing and establishment
Amigain red clover can be sown in early autumn or spring at 4-6 kg/ha (Superstrike®) in permanent pasture mixes with white clover, ryegrass, tall fescue or cocksfoot. During the establishment phase, grazing should be frequent and light to open pasture swards and allow establishment of legume content.
As a specialist short term mix for animal production and/or high quality silage (2-3 years), Amigain red clover can be used at higher 6-8 kg/ha rates (Superstrike®) in association with other options such as Delish AR1 short rotation ryegrass, Lush AR37 Italian ryegrass, Puna II chicory and/or Quartz white clover.
Red clover stands should be sown at 10-12 kg/ha (Superstrike®) with 2-3 kg/ha (Superstrike®) of either Quartz or Legacy white clover to enhance ground cover.
In a pasture mix, rotationally graze Amigain or set stock for short periods of time to maximise regrowth and persistence. In pure sward crops, monitor spring growth closely and stock accordingly to maintain quality for a summer grazing rotation.
Formononetin (oestrogen) levels
Formononetin is an oestrogenic compound in red clover that can have negative impacts on ewe fertility if fed prior to mating. Amigain has been selected for lower levels of formononetin. Trial testing completed on 11 sampling dates (2016-2018) in Lincoln, Canterbury, demonstrated Amigain to have significantly lower formononetin levels than SF Rossi, Rajah and Tuscan.
Performance of Amigain sown as a pure sward
When trialled as a pure sward of red clover in Kerikeri (2017-2019) under mixed sheep and beef grazing, Amigain produced the highest average yield over three years (2017- 2019). A significant contributing factor to Amigain’s success was noted persistence and production in the second and third years of evaluation.
Performance of Amigain red clover in a perennial ryegrass sward
When trialled in a mixed perennial ryegrass sward in Aorangi, Palmerston North (2012- 2015) under beef cattle grazing, Amigain persisted extremely well with relative yield strengthening over time as the performance of traditional cultivars declined.