New and improved forage varieties for Queensland growers

Two new forage oat varieties are now available to Queensland and New South Wales growers and are profiled in the new Forage oat variety guide 2016.

The guide contains a comprehensive list of forage oat varieties including information on growth habit, speed to grazing, maturity, reaction to diseases and where seeds can be purchased.

Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) Senior Plant Breeder Bruce Winter said that forage oat growers in central and southern Queensland and northern NSW should begin planning ahead for their crops this year.

“Growers should try to adopt recommended management practices aimed at increasing forage growth,” Mr Winter said.

“Our newly released guide can assist growers in this exact process, suggesting management practices and strategies to reduce diseases.”

Mr Winter said that while leaf rust remains the major disease problem in forage oats, this is less likely to be a problem in drier years.

“To reduce the risk of leaf rust infection and poor establishment in 2016, growers should only plant oats from mid-March through to June,” Mr Winter said.

“The optimum soil temperature for the establishment of oats is between 15°C and 25°C, and this occurs during those months.”

Forage oats will again be an important source of feed for fattening cattle in 2016. Continuing high beef prices mean that cattle producers are looking to improve live weight gain in autumn and early winter.

Further information on planting, nutrition, diseases and treatment is available in the new guide, which is now available online at or by contacting the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries on 13 25 23.

Media: Laura Hutton 07 3087 8576

Download the Forage oat variety guide 2016 (PDF 1.7 MB)