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20 years of searching for an alternative temperate grass species for low to medium rainfall environments in Tasmania


Hall, E and Hurst, AM and Reid, RR, 20 years of searching for an alternative temperate grass species for low to medium rainfall environments in Tasmania, Perennial Grasses in Pasture Production Systems Symposium 2013, 15-16 May 2013, Canberra, Australia (2013) [Conference Extract]


Between 1992 and 2012, in response to the need to find persistent and productive perennial grasses better adapted to the changing climatic conditions being experienced across dryland pastures in cool temperate low to medium rainfall (300-750 mm) regions of Tasmania, representatives from 65 species representing 14 Genera of perennial grasses were screened and evaluated for production and persistence under sheep grazing, across a range of sites in the target area. The work identified two promising alternative species. Hispanic or Spanish cocksfoot (Dactylis glomerata ssp. hispanica) proved to be a highly resilient species, able to withstand the driest conditions ever experienced in Tasmania. Also identified was the highly productive Coloured brome (Bromus coloratus), which showed it was well adapted to a temperate environment receiving >500mm annual rainfall. Cultivars representing both these species have recently been commercialised and are available to producers. This work also highlighted the deficiencies of a number of commonly sown species, the most notable being perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne), which failed to survive years when annual rainfall fell below 500mm. A number of other species were identified as worthy of further consideration for use in this environment, particularly from within the Genera Bromus.

Item Details

Item Type:Conference Extract
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Crop and pasture production
Research Field:Crop and pasture improvement (incl. selection and breeding)
Objective Division:Animal Production and Animal Primary Products
Objective Group:Pasture, browse and fodder crops
Objective Field:Pasture, browse and fodder crops not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Hall, E (Mr Eric Hall)
UTAS Author:Hurst, AM (Ms Andrea Hurst)
ID Code:83940
Year Published:2013
Deposited By:Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture
Deposited On:2013-03-31
Last Modified:2014-04-16

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