1a.Objectives (from AD-416)
1) To identify the optimum selection technique to identify the best performing switchgrass plants (with higher nitrogen use efficiency [NUE]) on marginal land and to identify germplasm of switchgrass that performs best on marginal land in each region;. 2)Identify cultivars of switchgrass that perform best on marginal land in each region and identify cultivars that may have broader adaptation across several locations on marginal land;. 3)Determine the biomass production of C4 grass and legume mixtures vs. C4 grass monocultures on marginal land in each adaptation region; and. 4)Develop new cultivars with improved biomass production for biofuels on marginal land in each adaptation region.
1b.Approach (from AD-416)
Switchgrass cultivars and half-sib families will be evaluated at Hancock and Arlington, WI. The two locations will represent prime farmland and marginal farmland for growing switchgrass as a bioenergy crop. Plots will be planted in 2008 and harvested in 2009-2011.
Various types of plots were established to evaluate cultivars, mixtures, half-sib families, and genotypes with and without nitrogen fertilizer on prime vs. marginal farmland. Data were collected on cultivar trials evaluated at two rates of nitrogen (N) and three pH levels. ADODR monitoring was accomplished by frequent email exchanges, occasional one-on-one telephone calls, one conference call, one group meeting at a national conference, and several exchanges of data.