Submitted to: Eastern Native Grass Symposium
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: July 1, 2006
Publication Date: October 10, 2006
Citation: Harrison Dunn, M.L. 2006. Native grass germplasm. Eastern Native Grass Symposium. Technical Abstract: The mission of the National Plant Germplasm System (NPGS) is to safeguard plant germplasm that is important to world agriculture by acquiring, documenting, maintaining, distributing and evaluating germplasm. One set of germplasm maintained by the NPGS is the switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.) collection housed at the Plant Genetic Resources Conservation Unit in Griffin, Georgia. The switchgrass collection contains 181 total accessions, 96 percent which are currently available for distribution. The material has been collected from 21 states throughout the U.S. representing a diverse geographic range. Cultivars/releases in this collection include Blackwell, Nebraska 28, Grenville, Kanlow, Maimi, Wabasso, Stuart, Alamo, Shelter, Cave-In-Rock, Caddo, Forestburg, Dacotah, Trailblazer, Shawnee, Sunburst, Falcon, Summer and Pathfinder. The material also includes a great deal of unreleased material. Small seed samples are freely available for bona-fide research purposes and can be requested through the Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN) website at http://www.ars-grin.gov/npgs/. The extent of morphological variation and differention in this population of accessions has not been assessed. Typically, descriptor data is available for each accession on the GRIN website. Descriptor data for warm-season grasses include plant height and width, foliage amount, height and distribution, leaf length and width, stem size, tiller production, maturity, seed production and winter survival. To acquire this data from the switchgrass germplasm, all accessions were germinated and transplanted to the field in spring 2006. In the fall 2006, descriptor data will be collected for each accession, and this information will be uploaded to the GRIN website for public access.