Original Articles

The influence of prolonged seasonal defoliation on veld yields


Natural veld of the Dry Cymbopogon‐Themeda veld type was grazed by Africander cattle and Merino sheep during various fixed seasons and all combinations of seasons over a period of ten years. At the termination of the experimental period, the veld was rested for a complete year and then cut for hay to determine the treatment effects. Due to good rainfall, high hay yields were obtained. Grazing in the late summer was most detrimental to the production of the veld, whereas spring or late winter grazing was especially beneficial to the veld. The experimental period was characterised by summer droughts and autumn rains. It appears that grazing during a rainy period after a drought is harmful to the veld.

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