Interpreting Yield Data

Alfalfa Summary:

Weather data summary for the 2005-growing season

Performance summary – Standard trials (insecticide applied)

Regional PLH Trial

Alfalfa Variety Trial - South Charleston, Ohio – 2003 Seeding

Alfalfa Variety Trial – Wooster, Ohio – 2003 Seeding

Alfalfa Variety Trial – North Baltimore, Ohio – 2004 Seeding

Alfalfa Variety Trial – Jackson, Ohio –2004 Seeding

Alfalfa Variety Trial –, South Charleston, Ohio – 2005 Seeding

Potato Leafhopper Resistant Trial – South Charleston, Ohio – 2004 Seeding

Potato Leafhopper Resistant Trial – Jackson, Ohio – 2004 Seeding

Red Clover:

Red Clover Variety Trial - S. Charleston, Ohio - 2000 Seeding.

Grass Summary:

Orchardgrass Variety Trial – South Charleston, Ohio – 2003 Seeding

Annual Ryegrass Variety Trial – South Charleston, Ohio – 2004 Seeding

Annual Ryegrass Variety Trial – South Charleston, Ohio – 2005 Fall Seeding

Tall Fescue Variety Trial – Jackson, Ohio – 2004 Seeding

Perennial Ryegrass Variety Trial – South Charleston, Ohio –2005 Seeding

Address of Marketers

Download files of yield data for 2005:

All Yield Trials - PDF for Printing

Alfalfa Yield Trials - Excel

Grass Yield Trial - Excel

Forage Variety Trials in Other States


2003 Ohio Forage Performance Trials, Series 195, Perennial Grasses

2005 Ohio Forage Performance Trials

Perennial Grasses

Perennial grasses provide early and late season grazing as well as hay. Grass species and varieties within species vary in several important characteristics that influence their suitability to a particular situation. The most important characteristics are maturity (how quickly the grass produces flowers in the spring), winterhardiness, stand survival, disease resistance, heat and drought tolerance, grazing and traffic tolerance.

Summary of 2005 Orchardgrass Performance

Orchardgrass yield in 2005 was better than expected (Table 12) given the below average rainfall and above average temperatures during the summer months. Orchardgrass varieties differed greatly in yield over the season, and in maturity at the first harvest. Orchardgrass is one of the most productive cool-season grasses grown in Ohio. It is a versatile perennial bunch-type grass (no rhizomes) that establishes rapidly and is suitable for hay, silage, or pasture. It has rapid regrowth, produces well under intensive cutting or grazing, and obtains more summer growth than most of the other cool-season grasses. Orchardgrass tolerates drought better than several other grasses. Orchardgrass is especially well suited for mixtures with tall legumes such as alfalfa and red clover; however, very early maturing varieties of orchardgrass are not well-suited for mixtures with these legumes. The rapid decline in palatability and quality with maturity is a limitation of this species.

Summary of 2005 Annual Ryegrass Performance

Annual ryegrass trials were established at South Charleston in April 2004 (Table 13) and September 2005 (Table 14). Higher yields were collected from the mid- to late- maturing varieties in 2004 compared to early-maturing varieties. Large differences were observed among 2004 seeded varieties in winter survival and yield in 2005. Varieties in the September 2005 seeding differed in November yield. Winter survival and yield of the varieties planted in September 2005 will be evaluated in 2006.
Annual ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum) is a cool-season annual bunch grass bunch grass that is highly palatable and digestible. It is closely related to perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne). Annual ryegrass is an important short-duration grass with high palatability and digestibility making this species highly valued for forage and livestock systems. It has high seedling vigor and is well adapted to either conventional or no-till establishment methods. Under good growing conditions, annual ryegrass can produce grazable forage in as little as 45 days after establishment.

Summary of 2005 Tall Fescue Performance

A tall fescue trial of endophyte-free varieties was established at Jackson in August 2004 (Table 15). Respectable yields were measured despite the low rainfall and above average summer temperatures. New varieties that are endophyte free or that contain the new non-toxic endophyte (Max Q) have potential to increase animal performance during the summer grazing season and provide adequate forage quality for beef cattle and sheep during autumn and early winter.
Tall fescue is considered a versatile and persistent perennial forage. In addition, fescue is used for erosion control, reclamation, and for turf. Tall fescue can tolerate somewhat poorly drained soils and low pH. It can grow and establish on medium fertility soils and is somewhat resistant to drought. Tall fescue is the most desirable grass to stockpile for late autumn and winter grazing. Higher yields of stockpiled fescue can be obtained in the fall when compared with other species of cool season grasses. Tall fescue is also tolerant of heavy traffic.

Summary of 2005 Perennial Ryegrass Performance

A perennial ryegrass trial was established at South Charleston in April 2005 (Table 16). The trial was clipped early to promote tillering and growth, but the dry summer limited yield. Perennial ryegrass is the most winter hardy of the ryegrass types. Tetraploid varieties usually have larger leaves, fewer but larger tillers, produce a more open growth (less ground cover), and tend to have higher digestibility than diploid varieties. Diploids tend to have finer leaves and produce more tillers. A couple of varieties in the ryegrass trial were festuloliums, which are crosses between annual ryegrass and fescue. They generally are more winter-hardy and slightly more drought tolerant than perennial ryegrass.