John Andrea: Pasture Management

John Andrae, PhD, Assistant Professor, Entomology, Soils and Plant Sciences

Most people think of pastures and hayfields as areas that require little or no management. Unfortunately, this couldn’t be farther from the truth. I’m John Andrae, extension forage specialist for Clemson University.

Pastures and hayfields occupy more land area than any single row crop in South Carolina. But unfortunately, they do require some management. Pastures and hayfields supply most of the nutritive needs of our beef cattle industries, equine industries, and the majority of the dairy cattle industry. Rising fuel and fertilizer prices in the past few years have made it necessary to get the most out of our pastures with the fewest amount of inputs.

Here at Clemson we’re designing efficient grazing systems and management systems. This research can decrease inputs like fertilizer and fuel, and increase the profitability of beef cattle production. In addition these grazing systems help the plant to persist better during times of drought, and may decrease the need for herbicides. Management of these pasture systems will benefit us all: the people, the plants, the animals, and the environment. For more information, contact Clemson University or visit the plant sciences website.