In 2015, the University of Vermont Extension Northwest Crops and Soils Program initiated a trial investigating forage yield, quality, and nitrogen use efficiency of cool season perennial grasses alone and in combination with red clover. The grass species selected were orchardgrass, timothy, brome, and meadow fescue. These grasses were chosen as they have been shown in previous research to have adequate survivability and forage production in this region compared to other species such as perennial ryegrass or festulolium. The goal of this trial is to evaluate these species not only for forage yield and quality, but also nitrogen use efficiency as this could help determine species and varieties that may be better suited to organic production systems. In addition, we hope to identify any differences in performance when legumes are incorporated. In 2016, with the stands fully established, evaluation of these perennial forage treatments continued.


Vermont, University of Vermont

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