Your Questions Answered
Miscanthus Giganteus (Elephant Grass) is a non-invasive, perennial 2nd generation energy crop that grows up to 3 metres tall, established from a Rhizome, providing nature cover and harvested annually to produce sustainable Biomass for Animal Bedding, Fuel and Composites. It uses virtually no chemicals or artificial fertilisers and benefits from applications of ‘dirty water’. Intensifies Biodiversity, reduces our reliance on woodland, compliments food production when grown on marginal land, lasts for 20 plus years without the need to replant, provides soil stability and facilitates the long-term storage of atmospheric carbon dioxide or other forms of carbon to assist or defer global warming.
Springtime - when soil temperature is 8 degrees C and above, but most importantly into a 150mm fine (perfect) seed Bed.
Normally 2 rhizomes per metre square.
Avoid Grade 1 food land, Miscanthus can grow on a wide variety of soils, particularly marginal land and particularly wet moisture retentive soils.
We have planted as late as early June and still established good crops.
We will supply rhizome for any area that you wish to plant, however if you are planting and require a contract, we would suggest a minimum area of 5ha (12.5 acres)
Providing the ph is above 5.8, Phosphate and Potash 1 or 1+ you require no artificial fertiliser.
Applications of FYM particularly applied and worked into the land during the winter preceding planting are highly beneficial as this will increase the Organic matter in the soil.
We have a fleet of planters which we hire out, from 2 row planters to automatic trailed planters.
Miscanthus Nursery can offer a complete management service from ploughing & planting through to annual harvesting and sale of the crop.
Grass weeds should be controlled as part of the land preparation prior to ploughed. Grass weed can be controlled with a preemergence grass and broad-leaved weed killer (Stomp Aqua), but these chemicals rely on moisture to activate them. Once established and during the crops dormant period (late Winter) it is possible to control grass weeds, but only with expert advice. Any weed control product recommendation on Miscanthus should be accompanied with Extension of Authorisation for Minor Use (EAMU) document.
In short, NO, however Miscanthus should not be planted after a long-term grass ley as there could be an inherent Leatherjacket and/or Wireworm problem. It is best practice if taking a long term ley out (Once you have checked with the EA that there are no protected species growing in that ley) to crop with an annual crop like cereals or maize where a seed dressing against these pest may be used, the pest problem after 1 year will be greatly reduced.
No, because Miscanthus is 48% carbon, it has no feed value, therefore no fungus can live on the plant.
Yes, just in the year of Establishment, Rabbits, Hare, deer or wild pigs may graze the new succulent growth, This can be rectified with Crop surround fencing or nontoxic plant repellents.
No, Miscanthus is tolerant down to circa -10 degrees C. However late spring frosts can burn of any new growth, but does not affect the seasons growth.
Early Winter snow can put Miscanthus down, but once cleared the crop will recover and harvest as usual
Miscanthus Nursery will advise you, as with all aspects of the crop, advice is always available when required. We make sure that you know enough to also become a crop expert.
Yes, currently Miscanthus sits as a perennial crop, outside the 2/3 crop rule and therefore requires no EFA or Greening.
Currently no, but we anticipate the crop being a major contributor to carbon capture and therefore ELMs payments should reflect this for the future. Make no mistake, Miscanthus is a major crop in the plan to reduce Carbon Emissions and have numerous advantages over Trees, planting Miscanthus can save trees!
No, Miscanthus Giganteus is a Non-Invasive variety
Yes, because the crop is of a woody nature with a shallow root ball it is easy to eradicate
Yes, all growers have the opportunity of signing up for a long-term contract if required.
Winter flooding presents no problem to Miscanthus during the winter dormant period, in fact benefits by expanding the water table and we have experienced growing crops being under water for 4 weeks in Summer!
Not a problem, but you should leave a 2/3 metre either side of the path when planting.
No, we would however recommend leaving a 3 metre Headland so that you have full access to the land. This can be planted with grass to cut hay or silage, or ideally planted with a tailored Wildflower mix to maximise the fields Biodiversity.
The terrain is limited to the harvesting machinery accessibility, slopes are possible, steeps not
Only in the spring when the crop is bone dry and ready to harvest, but the rare occasions of fire only the mulch in the bottom of the crop burns, the remaining crop is still harvestable The fire risk is lower than that of conventional cereal crops due to harvesting late winter/Early Spring.
We would suggest you do not use as a maze as the leaves are very sharp and will cause shallow long cuts which feel like stings.
No, other suppliers are available, we as a farmer’s grower cooperative pride ourselves on customer service with UK grown Miscanthus Giganteus crops and all planting carry an establishment Guarantee
Yes, for amounts of 1000 rhizomes or less please visit Carbon Trap who will be happy to accomodate your requirements.