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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Testing Perennial Grasses for Low-Input Biomass Production and Persistence in Cold High-Elevation Growing Environments of the Western U.S.

Location: Forage and Range Research

2011 Annual Report


1a.Objectives (from AD-416)
Evaluate seasonal biomass accumulation, persistence, and forage quality of cool-season grasses under different fertilizer treatments at cold high-elevation growing environments in Colorado and Utah.


1b.Approach (from AD-416)
ARS and Flux Farm (Colorado) will jointly plan, design, and implement multi-year field evaluations of cool-season perennial grass species. Emphasis will be placed on low-input management techniques, including reduced water, fertilizer, and fuel requirements. ARS and Flux Farm will jointly prepare and publish assessments of the biomass production potentials and efficiency over different growing environments of the semiarid western U.S., by summarizing literature and results of other ongoing field experiments conducted by the ARS.


3.Progress Report

The main objectives of this project are to evaluate seasonal biomass accumulation, persistence, and forage quality of perennial cool-season grasses under different fertilizer treatments in cold high-elevation growing environments over multiple years in Colorado and Utah. The aim of these studies is to identify species and low-input management techniques to efficiently produce forage and biomass in relatively short, cold growing environments that receive heavy winter precipitation.

During FY-2011: All work outlined in the SOW was completed. A field area was plowed twice, disked three times, and planted with barley to choke out weeds in preparation for tentative plantings in the Fall of FY 2011.

Monitoring Methods: • Periodic email and telephone conversations as necessary to plan and discuss proposed field evaluations.


Last Modified: 12/22/2014
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