Page Banner

United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Establishing Switchgrass for Biofuel and Forage During Seeding and Early Seedling Growth Stages

Authors
item Fransen, S - WASHINGTON ST UNIV
item Collins, Harold

Submitted to: Experiment Station Bulletins
Publication Type: Experiment Station
Publication Acceptance Date: June 26, 2008
Publication Date: N/A

Technical Abstract: Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) and other selected perennial warm-season grasses (WSG) are adapted to the hotter and irrigated regions of the Pacific Northwest where they can be successfully grown as feedstock for cellulosic biofuel or forage for livestock. Switchgrass, a warm-season, rhizomatous, native grass to the mid-west and southeast, has been grown for more than 20 years in the Columbia Basin for the purpose of seed production. We first established switchgrass and other WSG in research trials at WSU-Prosser in 2002. From the very beginning it was apparent these warm-season perennial grasses were very different than anything we had grown in the state of Washington to date. Establishing a successful and productive stand continues to be our first major challenge when managing WSG for biofuel. For growers who have easily and successfully established stands of perennial cool-season grasses (CSG) like orchardgrass (Dactylis glomerata) or timothy (Phleum pratensis) for pasture or hay, achieving a successful stand of WSG will be different and certainly challenging. This bulletin will assist growers, new to WSG, through pre and post seeding and early seedling growth stages of grass development.

Last Modified: 4/17/2014
Footer Content Back to Top of Page