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ARS Home » Northeast Area » University Park, Pennsylvania » Pasture Systems & Watershed Management Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #302145

Research Project: Multifunctional Farms and Landscapes to Enhance Ecosystem Services

Location: Pasture Systems & Watershed Management Research

Title: Freeze tolerance of perennial ryegrass

Author
item Gonet, Jeffery
item Goslee, Sarah
item Skinner, Robert

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/26/2014
Publication Date: 2/4/2014
Citation: Gonet, J.M., Goslee, S.C., Skinner, R.H. 2014. Freeze tolerance of perennial ryegrass[Abstract]. Northeast Pasture Consortium. p 4.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Perennial ryegrass is the most widely grown cool season grass in the world. Seed producers are developing more productive and more persistent varieties for North America. Different varieties exhibit a wide range of characteristics such as maturity, winter-hardiness, disease resistance, digestibility, dry matter production and persistence. We grew thirteen varieties of perennial ryegrass in a growth chamber, then subjected them to freezing to either 14F, 5F, or -4F (-10C, -15C, or -20C). We used a specially-modified digital camera to take photographs of each variety before and after freezing. These images show the amount of live (green photosynthetic) plant material, rather than the usual visual image. Images from 8 days before the freeze treatment were compared with those from 8 days after to determine the percent change in live cover. The varieties that stand out as being the most freeze susceptible are Baraudi (6), Barmotta (4), Barutti (7), and Kilrea (5). Freeze tolerance did not correspond well to the ratings assigned by the seed companies. The best performer, Barsprinter, was rated a 7 (very tolerant), but so was one of the worst performers (Barutti). Some varieties showed regrowth at longer intervals, however.