Grassland Agronomy Update – April 2017

Welcome to the Grassland Agronomy Update from Dow AgroSciences.

These regular technical notes are a seasonal commentary to help those interested in improving grassland productivity on dairy, beef, sheep & equestrian enterprises.

You can claim 2 CPD points for subscribing to this email update.


  • Time to spray docks
  • Spray buttercups with Envy
  • Clean start for new-sown leys
  • A new herbicide option for maize
  • It’s the Dow Grassland APP for Forefront T stewardship
  • FAQs
  • Dow AgroSciences show calendar

Time to spray docks before first cut silage

A mild winter and warm spring days means that docks are well established and growing well. Plan dock sprays now – particularly on fields destined for silage.

Last year April was very wet so many dock problems in silage fields were not sprayed. Given this and the mild winter docks are going to be a problem.

Right size to spray

Use full label rates to secure the lasting levels of control sought by farmers and lessen the need for follow up sprays.

Ideal size is about 20 cm cross – dinner-plate sized.

Doxstar®Pro translocates exceptionally well meaning it gets right down into the roots. It takes three to four weeks to do this and have a lasting effect.

Applications made in early to mid-April will get rid of the weeds well ahead of first cut, giving the grass a chance to re-colonize the space left by the dead weeds.

Water volumes can be dropped to 200 L/ha if using air inclusion nozzles.

DoxstarPro is very safe to grass – still the top concern for grassland farmers who spray herbicides.

Stock withdrawal period is just 7 days.

DoxstarPro will kill clover so if present and the decision is made to remove the docks then plan to reintroduce clover six weeks later.

Which dock product?

DoxstarPro: If docks are the only problem save dandelions or chickweed

Forefront®T: if the dock population is very high and they have been well established for many years or if other weeds notably thistles, buttercups, nettles or dandelions are also present. Use on grazing fields. Use on hay and silage fields after the last cut has been taken.

Pas.Tor® Agronomy Pack: This replaces Pastor®Pro so use where docks, thistles or nettles are present. Each pack treats 2 hectares and will deliver a level of weed control that equates to 3 L/ha of PastorPro.

Spray buttercups with Envy

Buttercups ready for treatment

Buttercups are now ready for treatment. Best results are achieved if sprayed before flowering. Envy®, a new product for grassland kills them and will also control dandelions.

Envy contains florasulam and fluroxypyr. Together they deliver excellent control of weeds found in pastures which typically get over grazed, receive minimal nitrogen or have poorly competing grass species present.

  • Envy controls buttercups, plantains, daisies, common chickweed, mouse eared chickweed and charlock
  • Envy has no manure management restrictions so is ideal for use in horse/pony paddocks where manure is often picked and used elsewhere. It will kill clover, which is often an advantage in equestrian situations where it is not wanted.
  • Envy has a short 7 day stock withdrawal period so animals can return quickly
  • Envy is very safe to grass and won’t hold back its growth

Treat when green

Buttercups are best controlled when they are still green and leafy and before the main flowering period. You will still get control during flowering but for the best effect treat now.

Establish with clients now if there are buttercup populations that warrant control. If so then treat with Envy at 2.0 L/ha.

Envy is a professional use product so must be applied by someone with an appropriate certification to spray. For some farmers and more likely equestrian businesses the services of a spray contractor will be required. The Dow Grassland APP has a feature to help find one.

Envy is sold is a 3 litre pack and applied at 2.0 L/ha will treat 1.5ha (3.7 acres).

Clean start for new-sown leys with Leystar

Investing in a new-sown ley can cost up to £500/ha or more so it’s vital that where weeds are present they are removed as that cost ratchets up more if you get it wrong.

Taking out a proportion of the grass on a farm for a new ley takes commitment and planning to ensure enough grass is left to feed the animals while the new ley comes up to a productive level.

LeystarRecent market research show farmers have concerns about poor establishment and the cost of reseeding. It’s vital then to embrace solutions to maximize success.

There are very few herbicides approved for use on new sown leys so Leystar®, new this year, will be much valued for the significant range of weeds that it controls including chickweed, fat hen and seedling docks and seedling thistles.

With three active ingredients – including fluroxypyr, clopyralid and the new grassland active ingredient florasulam, it is particularly safe to use on young grass.

  • Spray once three grass leaves have appeared
  • It is a suspension emulsion formulation
  • Apply at 1.0 L/ha any time from 1st February to 31st August.
  • Comes in a 2 litre pack that treats two hectares (five acres)
  • Apply in 200 litres of water
  • Rainfast in two hours

For best results apply when the weeds are small and actively growing. Be aware, that broad-leaved weeds not present at spraying will not be controlled.

Farmers should not roll or harrow the grass ten days before or seven days after application. They should not spray where clover is a valued constituent of the sward. Clover can be seeded in 3 months post application of Leystar.

Spraying with Leystar early in the sward’s life will ensure a good clean start, allowing the grass mixtures to establish quickly with no competition from weeds.

Click here for the technical information sheet on Leystar.

A new herbicide option for Maize

Leystar can be used on maize and will control many broad leaved weeds that emerge post sowing.

Weed competition at the early stage of the maize crops can significantly affect its potential. A very broad spectrum weed control solution that can also be used in new sown leys will prove an attractive option for livestock farmers.

  • In addition to weeds mentioned above, it will control, black nightshade, bindweed & knotgrass. For a full list of weeds see the Leystar technical information sheet.
  • Apply between the third and sixth leaf stage and before the crop is more than 20 cm tall. It must not be applied once the buttress roots have started to develop on the first node.
  • Application window is currently from 10th April to 31st May. Dow AgroSciences is working to extend this end date for 2018.
  • Grass can be sown after the maize has been harvested within the year of treatment with no adverse effect.
  • The dose rate is the same as for new sown leys; at 1 litre/ha applied is 200 litres/ha of water.

It’s the Dow Grassland App for Forefront T stewardship

We’ve gone digital for speed and efficiency. All Forefront T stewardship guidance to end users must be logged via the APP or via the stewardship feature on the web:

The Forefront T stewardship pad is no longer part of this process.

For further support contact your local Dow AgroSciences representative or call Hotline on 0800 689 8899

Download the Dow Grassland App, by using one of these links:
App Store / Google Play / Windows Store

If the App is already downloaded, please ensure the latest version is being used.


Q. When can silage be cut if Forefront T is going to be used this spring?
A. Forefront T should NOT be used on grass destined for silage in the year of its application. It can be used in a silage field after the last cut of silage has been taken. Grass from that field can be used to make silage the following year but resulting silage and manure must stay on the farm.

Q. What can I use to treat thistles via a knapsack?
A. Use Grazon®Pro if treating thistles with a knapsack. All thistle species should be controlled with GrazonPro. Best effect is an application when plants are at rosette stage.

Q. What can I use for thistle and nettle control in game cover crops?
A. There is an EAMU which allows for Thistlex® use. This will control thistles and have a very good effect on nettles. Applications must be made between 1st March & 31st October. Click here for more information of weed control options in game cover crops.

Show Dates

The technical team from Dow AgroSciences will be out and about at many shows and events this summer, talking to farmers and agronomists and answering questions on how to tackle weed problems in their fields.

Catch the team at:

May 16th NSA Welsh Sheep  Brecon, Powys
May 18th NBA Beef Expo  Stoneleigh Park, Warwickshire
May 24th & 25th Grassland & Muck  Stoneleigh Park, Warwickshire
May 31st NSA Highland Sheep  Strathpeffer,Ross-shire
June 8th NSA North Sheep  Tow Law, County Durham
June 8th Scottish Beef Event  Earlston, Berwickshire
June 20th NSA Sheep South West Tiverton, Devon


2 BASIS points (1 crop protection and 1 personal development) will be awarded to those subscribing to Dow AgroSciences’ Grassland Agronomy Update. Please include course name ‘Grassland Agronomy Update’ and ref number: CPE/51889/1617/g, on your training record. If necessary contact Linda Miller ( to redeem points. These details are valid until 31st May 2017.

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® Trademark of the Dow Chemical Company (“Dow”) or an affiliated company of Dow. All other brand names are trademarks of other manufacturers for which proprietary rights may exist.

DoxstarPro contains fluroxypyr and triclopyr
Envy contains fluroxypyr and florasulam
Forefront T contains aminopyralid and triclopyr
GrazonPro contains clopyralid and triclopyr
Leystar contains fluroxypyr, clopyralid and florasulam
PastorPro contains clopyralid, fluroxypyr and triclopyr
Pas.Tor Agronomy Pack contains clopyralid, fluroxypyr and triclopyr
Thistlex contains clopyralid and triclopyr

Dow AgroSciences Limited, CPC2, Capital Park, Fulbourn, Cambridge, CB21 5XE. Tel: +44 (0) 1462 457272.
Technical Hotline: 0800 689 8899 email: |

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Problem Solution Dose Rate Water Volume Grazing Interval
Docks and Chickweed 2.0 L/ha 300-400 L/ha 7 days
Weedy paddocks
Chickweed control
Weeds in new sown leys
1.5 - 2.0 L/ha 200-400 L/ha 7 days
Docks, Thistles, Nettles, Buttercups, Dandelions and Ragwort 2.0 L/ha 200-300 L/ha 7 days
Knapsack/spot treatment: Docks, Thistles, Nettles, Brambles, Gorse and Broom 60 mls 10 Litres 7 days
Weed control in new leys, grass for seed and maize 1.0 L/ha 200 L/ha 7 days
Docks, Thistles, Nettles 1 L/ha Pas + 1 L/ha Tor 200 L/ha with air inclusion nozzles 7 days
Thistles 1.0 L/ha 200-400 L/ha 7 days

Grassland Agronomy Update – April 2017 11/04/2017

Welcome to the Grassland Agronomy Update from Dow AgroSciences. These regular technical notes are a seasonal commentary to help those interested in improving grassland productivity on dairy, beef, sheep & equestrian enterprises. You can claim 2 CPD points for subscribing to this email update. Contents Time to spray docks Spray buttercups with Envy Clean start […]

Read the full story

Spray docks three weeks before first cut silage 10/04/2017

Spraying docks with a translocated herbicide now, when they are young, healthy and actively growing, will increase grass silage yields and improve the feed quality of the resulting forage. Docks are growing early this year, due to the relatively mild winter and warm start to spring. They have good root systems and will out-compete the […]

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Chickweed in grassland 31/03/2017

Chickweed is a weed which can quickly grow and smother a young ley or established grassland – particularly where slurry injection is taking place. It is currently warm during the day but cooler at night. Weeds are growing but selecting the right solution is important. Envy™ , a new solution from Dow AgroSciences containing the new […]

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Grassland Agronomy Update – March 2017 03/03/2017

Welcome to the Grassland Agronomy Update from Dow AgroSciences. These regular technical notes are a seasonal commentary to help those interested in improving grassland productivity on dairy, beef, sheep & equestrian enterprises. You can claim 2 CPD points for subscribing to this email update. Contents • The arsenal for grassland weed control • Three new […]

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Spraying Grassland with Low Water Volumes 13/01/2017

Dow AgroSciences now supports reducing water volumes whilst spraying grassland. Water volumes can be reduced to 200 L/ha when using Air Inclusion nozzles.

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Grassland News Archive
Are Dow AgroSciences grassland herbicides clover safe?
No, clover will be killed or severely checked by applications of Dow AgroSciences’ grassland herbicides.  However you can stitch clover back in after six weeks of applying PastorPro, Thistlex, DoxstarPro or GrazonPro. When using Forefront T, clover can be reintroduced four months after application.
Can any of the Grassland products; DoxstarPro, Forefront T, PastorPro, Thistlex or GrazonPro be tank mixed with MCPA or 2,4-D?
This approach is not recommended and is not supported by Dow AgroSciences. Quick 'burn down' of top growth with phenoxy herbicides can hinder movement of the translocated active ingredients in DoxstarPro, Forefront T, PastorPro, Thistlex and GrazonPro to the roots, leading to poor levels of weed control.
Can DoxstarPro, Forefront T, PastorPro, Thistlex or GrazonPro be used on new leys (<12 months old)?
No. Grassland should be at least 12 months old for all of the above products. Use Leystar or Envy for grass leys under 12 months.  
Can I apply PastorPro through a Knapsack?
No. There is no approval for hand-held application of PastorPro. Consider using  GrazonPro for hand-held applications.
Will PastorPro control thistles?
Yes. Apply at 4.0 L/ha.
Can I use GrazonPro on my lawn?
No. GrazonPro is a professional product recommended for use only as an agricultural herbicide.
How rainfast is GrazonPro?
If GrazonPro is applied to a dry leaf it will be rainfast in 2 hours.
What rate of GrazonPro should be applied through a knapsack?
60 ml of GrazonPro in 10 litres water.
What is the grazing interval for GrazonPro?
Seven days. Ideally allow 28  days if cutting the field for silage or hay. The seven day exclusion period may need to be extended if poisonous weeds are present.
Will GrazonPro control chickweed?
No, but DoxstarPro, Forefront T and PastorPro all give excellent control when applied under the correct conditions.
What is the best Dow grassland product for cow parsley control?
GrazonPro offers good control of cow parsley when used at the rosette stage. It is for spot treatment only. Forefront T and PastorPro can be applied through tractor mounted hydraulic sprayers. Forefront T offers moderate control of cow parsley. Forefront T use is limited to grass grazed by cattle and sheep only.  Although not as effective at Forefront T, PastorPro offers some control of cow parsley and can be used on field including those for silage and hay.
What is the cutting interval after spraying weeds in grassland?
After application of our products leave a minimum of 21 days, ideally 28 days  before cutting to allow maximum translocation of the active ingredients down to the roots of weeds.
What is the grazing/cutting interval after application of PastorPro?
Seven days for grazing and ideally 28 days if grass is being cut. The seven day exclusion period may need to be extended if poisonous weeds are present.
What is the knapsack rate for DoxstarPro, Forefront T, PastorPro and Thistlex?
These products are not recommended for application through a knapsack. GrazonPro at 60 ml in 10 litres of water is the best product for spot treatment.
What is the stock exclusion period for hens?
The same as for livestock: seven days and until foliage of any poisonous weeds such as ragwort has died and become unpalatable.  
What is the stock exclusion period for horses for Doxstar Pro, GrazonPro, PastorPro and Thistlex?
The same as for livestock: 7 days and until foliage of any poisonous weeds such as ragwort has died and become unpalatable.
What products do Dow AgroSciences recommend to control brambles in grassland?
Brambles should be sprayed between June and August, when plants are actively growing, but before plants begin to senesce in the autumn. It is essential that all foliage is thoroughly wetted or incomplete kill may result. The maximum concentration must not exceed 60ml of GrazonPro per 10 litres of water.   Blaster Pro can be used to control brambles in amenity grass.
What water volumes do I need to control docks in established grassland with Doxstar Pro?
Whenever DoxstarPro is used in established grassland the rate of water should always be 300-400 L/ha.
Will any Dow AgroSciences product control ragwort in horse paddocks?
No Dow AgroSciences product is recommended for control of ragwort in horse paddocks. The best method of control is to dig them up. 2,4-D can be used as an overall spray.
Will DoxstarPro, Forefront T or PastorPro control large flowering docks?
No. They must be topped and allowed to regrow. Treatments should then be made under good growing conditions to actively growing plants when they reach the rosette stage.
Will Thistlex control dandelions?
Yes, but it is not an 'on label' weed. Consider topping dandelions and then applying Thistlex 2 - 3 weeks later at the rosette stage of the weed.