Gatton panic

Megathyrsus maximus

  • Leafy plant which produces high quality, palatable dry matter
  • Highly productive on fertile soils
  • Compatible with sub-tropical legumes
  • Moderate drought tolerance
  • Very responsive to rainfall
  • Sowing Rate 2-8 kg/ha as a sole pasture & 1.5-3kg per ha as a mixed pasture
  • Growing Seasons Autumn, Spring, Summer
  • Grazing Seasons Spring, Summer, Autumn
  • Rainfall Minimum 500mm per annum
  • Pasture Life 5 years+
  • Soil Fertility Medium (Olsen P 15-20)

The palatable and leafy option for high productivity

Gatton panic is a vigorous summer-active perennial grass suited to a wide range of sub-tropical grazing operations. It is responsive to rainfall and tolerant to drought. Highly palatable and fantastic on its own or as part of a mix.

Gatton panic prefers light to medium soil types and suits subtropical zones with annual rainfall of 500mm to 1500mm. If green plant material is frosted in winter, it can reshoot in spring when moisture and higher growing temperatures are present.

Gatton panic

Soil

Gatton panic is well adapted to a wide range of light to medium textured soil types providing they are well-drained, moist and fertile. Gatton panic prefers high fertility soils with a soil pH between 5.5-6. It does not tolerate water logging or salinity and shouldn’t be planted on heavy soils.

Although highly responsive to Nitrogen and phosphate, maintenance applications of phosphate and Nitrogen are required for a highly productive pasture. Apply phosphate at 20-40kg/ha/yr, and apply Nitrogen at 100-200kg/ha/yr. 

Rainfall

Sow pasture seed in areas that experience between 500mm and 1500mm rainfall per annum. The drought tolerance of Gatton panic varies depending on soil type and generally doesn’t tolerate dry periods longer than 4 to 5 months. Tolerant of short-term flooding by moving water.

Sowing and establishment 

For successful establishment of Gatton panic pasture seed, seedbed preparation and seed to soil contact is important for an even germination. Prepare seedbed well with prior weed control, good subsoil moisture and consolidation (rolling) after sowing pasture seed to improve germination and establishment. 

Sow pasture seed at 2-8kg/ha if sown as a sole pasture and 1.5-3kg/ha when sowing within a mixed pasture. When direct drilling, drill with fertiliser if able and sow no deeper than 1cm whilst ensuring slots are closed with the use of press wheels or rolling. 

For information and sowing rates specific to your farming needs, contact your local PGG Wrightson Seeds Sales Agronomist here.

Agronomic performance

If Gatton panic is provided with enough nutrients (N) and moisture, dry matter yields range between 5-20tDM/ha/yr. Nitrogen is a key driver for high dry matter yields, maintenance requirements can range between 100-200kg/ha/yr of Nitrogen.

Grazing management

Gatton panic is suited to light stocking rates and/or rotational grazing. A rotational grazing system of 1 week on, 4 weeks rest has shown good results in the subtropics. For long term persistence of a pasture, Gatton panic shouldn’t be cut (low or frequent) or grazed below 15cm.

Rotational grazing using a 4 week interval allows a balance between quality and quantity. Gatton panic combines well with twining legumes under light/rotational grazing. Always sow Gatton panic with grass of similar palatability to avoid over grazing of Gatton panic.

Animal production

Gatton panic is readily accepted by all classes of grazing livestock. When grazed under good grazing management with young leafy growth, animal intakes will be high. Nutritive values will vary depending on grazing management and fertiliser inputs (N), and crude protein levels can range from 6 to 25%.

Stock liveweight gains can be up to 0.8 kg/hd/day and up to 1,200 kg/ha/yr LWG (commonly 300‒500 kg/ha/yr LWG) depending primarily on stocking rate, N fertiliser rate and age of regrowth.

 

Available with the Envirogro seed treatment process

The Envirogro seed treatment process gives PGG Wrightson Seeds tropical and subtropical pasture seed varieties a better start. Envirogro is a tailored process, that cleans, treats, and improves the bare seed count and purity of tropical, subtropical grasses and legumes.

If the species requires, the bare seed is taken through a process of de-hulling leaving only the caryopses, before being coated and cleaned again to achieve high purity. 

Envirogro benefits

  • Coated with insecticide, polymer and talc/lime
  • Improved seed flowability and ballistic properties
  • Improves seed quality and purity
  • Increases bare seed count for a higher return on investment
  • Produces a clean, uniform seed
  • Reduced risk of establishment failure 
  • Removes seed husk from the caryopsis (if required)
  • Removes weed seed, waste material and contaminants 

Click here for more information on the Envirogro seed treatment process

Rainfall

Minimum 500mm rainfall per annum unless irrigated

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