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Copyright 2005, Board of Trustees, University
SAgricultural Research Center, Ona H j/V / *-*
Ag.clt. October 1976
Research Report RC-1976-L0 JUL October 19
S-10 / /
U !LS .S -.
RYEGRASS FORAGE PRODUCTION AT, Opi ND~ A @TE'a 975-76
R. S. Kalmbachir, P. Mislevy, P. H. Everett, K. McVeigh and G. Prine /
Annual ryegrass (Lolium nmltiflorun Lam.) is of economic importance
during the cooler winter months of South-Cehntral Florida. Ryegrass, seeded
alone or in a perennial grass sod, provides high quality forage which is
quick to.establish. Cultivated areas seeded to pure stands of ryegrass
can be grazed within 2 months after seeding, and grazing may extend for
120 days. Ryegrass.responds well to nitrogen fertilization, which leads
to more rapid growth, higher' crude protein, lower crude fiber, and improved
The purpose of the investigation was to evaluate several ryegrass
cultivars under the environmental conditions found at 2 locations in
South-Central Florida. These ryegrasses were compared for yield, quality,
disease resistance and persistence.
Seven ryegrass varieties were seeded at both the Ona and .Immokalee ',
Agricultural Research Centers-(ARC). The field pl t .layout at Ona consisted:
of 4 replications of a randomized complete, block design. At Immokalee
there were 3 replications of this design. .An additional 8 ryegrasses from
Northern Europe and Scandinavian countries were tested at Ona in an unrepli-
Ryegrasses were sown on November 7, 1975 at the Ona ARC, and November
25, 1975 at the Immokalee ARC. Seeding rates were 20.,lb/A at both locations.
Prior to seeding, plots at Ona were fertilize ,with 700 Ib/A of an 0-10-20
analysis fertilizer, plus 28 Ib/A of FTE 503 At Immokalee 430 Ib/A
of 0-10-20 plus 17 lb/A of FTE 503 was applied. Fifty pounds of nitrogen
(N) was applied 10 days after seeding at Ona and 17 days after seeding at
Immokalee. Following each harvest, nitrogen at a rate of 50 Ib/A was
The experiment at Ona received 8.3 inches of water applied with an
over-head irrigation system. At Immokalee a seepage system was used.
Irrigation was applied weekly or when needed.
Ryegrasses were harvested 5 times during the 1975-76 growing season.
The initial and subsequent harvests were made when the grass attained
9-12 ". Harvesting intervals were 21 to 30 days. There was 41 days between
harvest 4 and 5 at Ona.
Assistant Professors, Ona ARC; Professor, Immokalee- ARC; Assistant
Professor Quincy AREC; Associate Professor Gainsville.
/ FTE 503 = 18.0% Iron; 7.0% Zinc; 7.57. Manganese; 3.0% Copper; 3.0% Boron;
Results and Discussion
There were ao significant (P50.05) differences among ryegrass varieties
grown at the Ona ARC (Table 1). All varieties were statistically equal. ~
However, 'Gulf' and 'Florida Rust Resistant' were slightly higher yielding
with 2.9 and 2.8 T/A, respectively. 'Jolanda'and 'Aubade were most sus-
ceptable to rust (Puccinia spp.). In fact 'Jolanda' dropped in production
toward the end of the trial and produced 2.3 T/A. In general, forage
production was well distributed throughout the growing season, averaging
0.5 T/A at each harvest.
Prior to harvest five, (mid-April) several ryegrasses were either
entirely or partially in the vegetative condition. This is quite important
especially if forage is utilized by grazing cattle. However, all ryegrasses
that remained in the vegetative condition and d#ln't develop infloresences
(heads) profusely, generally contained various intensities of rust infesta-
tion, ie. 'Jolanda', 'Aubade' and 'N.K. Tetrablend 444'. However, 'Magnolia'
was one exception which remained partially vegetative and contained little
or no rust. 'Gulf', 'Fla. Rust Resistant' and 'Fla. Reseeding 75' all
developed headed profusely in late March: also all were rust resistant.
The same 7 ryegrass varieties did yield differently (P0s.05) at
Immokalee (Table 2). An experimental ryegrass, 'Fla. Reseeding 75', 'Gulf'
'Fla. Rust Resistant', and 'Tetrablend 444' were significantly higher in
yield with 2.7, 2.6, 2.5 and 2.5 T/A, respectively. 'Jolanda' was the
lower yielding variety at Immokalee. 'Jolanda', 'Tetrablend 444', and
'Aubade' plants appeared to have little resistance to rust, particularly
late in the growing season.
The eight varieties from Northern Europe and Scandinavian countries
appeared to produce respectable yields (Table 3), but no statistical
analyses can be applied. 'Denmark S-2538' and 'Tetraploid HV-2' produced
the highest yield averaging 3.1 tons of dry matter per acre. In fact,
'Denmark S-2538' produced highest 5th harvest (4-21-76) yield of all varieties
contributing 0.8 tons/A. This same entry still remained partially green
as late into the growing season as mid-June.
All varieties were mostly rust free, except 'Tewera' which contained
some rust in mid-April. None of these North European or Scandinavian I
varieties produced infloresences in South-Central Florida.
Percent IVOMD for the 7 ryegrasses grown at Immokalee are presented in
Table 4. Varieties averaged 84.2% on January 9 and dropped to 73.4% on
April 22. This decrease in quality is a reflection of an increase in
maturity and rust infestation. 'Jolanda', as mentioned above, was heavily
infested with rust at the April 21 harvest and this was reflected in its
drop in quality from 77.9% at March 22 to 72.1% at April 21. There were
no statistical differences (P<0.05) among average ryegrass variety IVOMD
There were no differences in dry matter yields between ryegrass varieties
grown at Ona ARC. Significant differences among varieties did exist at the
Immokalee ARC. Yields at Ona and Immokalee were similar.
Several European and Scandinavian ryegrass varieties appear to have
some adaptability under Ona ARC conditions. These warrant further research.
There were no significant differences in average IVOMD values among
ryegrass varieties grown at Immokalee ARC.
Good quality, high-yielding ryegrass forage can be produced at Ona
and Immokalee with proper irrigation, fertility, and management.
the ARC Ona,
1 2 3 4 5
i 9/ z lb
- - - Dry matter
Means within columns
to Duncans Multiple
t e -
significantly different at
~mi, L -- U -- -w --
1 2 3 4 5
1/9/76 2/3/76 3/1/76 3/22/76 4/21/76
- - Dry matter TA -
Jolanda 0.4 a 0.6a 0.5 a 0.4 d 0.3 b 2.2 c
Means within columns
s least significant
forage production of
the ARC Ona
from Europe and
I II J .l. II I I.
1 2 3 4 5
1/6/76 1/29/76 2/19/76 3/11/76 4/21/76
a Dry matter TA -- -
Holland Jumbo hybrid
seed not available.
Percent in vitro organic matter digestibility
I moalee 1976
1 2 3 4 5
Means wtithin-averauge .c61umn "follokzed byethet:amealettet are.46't-
sign ficantly di fferent
seed not av
Sk i l li I I I Aimll II I I
I I-~- I- I--- |-- I --- I- III I .-- I- I. I III IJ I