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The grass adaptation trial seeded in late summer in the 1972 season was clipped for the third year in the 1975 season. The stands of one variety, basin wildrye, improved considerably in the 1975 season, although the plants were still widely spaced. Some of theses plots were clipped for yield. The Alti wildrye plots continued to be overgrown with slender wheatgrass and were not clipped in 1975. The plots of Mandan ricegrass and Indian ricegrass continued to be in very poor shape, and to date they have not been clipped as part of the trial.

Average yields of the varieties for the 3-year period of the trial are given in Table 9. Overall yields in the 1975 season were only slightly better than in the 1974 season, averaging 3628 lbs/acre in 1975 as against 3505 lbs in 1974. The highest yield of any variety in 1975 was from Turkey brome, 5679 lbs/acre. This variety was also highest yielding in the 1974 season. These yields were obtained from a rather thin stand of exceptionally robust plants. Basin wildrye (SCS) appears as second highest producer in 1975 at 5286 lbs/acre. However, this production was from only part of the plots, with part remaining in unsatisfactory condition. Topar pubescent wheatgrass #759, Lincoln bromegrass, Topar pubescent wheatgrass (Pullman), and Nordan crested wheatgrass all yielded over 4000 lbs/acre. Mandan 404 brome, Lodorm green stipa, Sodar wheatgrass, western wheatgrass #456, and Basin wildrye (Pullman) all yielded over 3000 lbs/acre.

Durar hard fescue and sheep fescue are both inherently low producing varieties, being short, fine-leaved bunchgrasses, but the stands of these varieties continued to improve through the 1975 season, and would now be rated as excellent. Production of the two varieties at 2302 and 2270 lbs/acre was excellent for grasses of this type.

Topar pubescent wheatgrass #759, selected at the SCS Plant Materials Center at Bismarck, continued to appear somewhat superior to the same variety with the seed source from the Pullman, Washington Plant Materials Center. The North Dakota selection appears to be somewhat leafier than the Pullman material, although both are vigorous, high-producing strains.

Lincoln brome has continued to out-yield Mandan 404, but Mandan 404 does look somewhat better than Lincoln as a pasture grass. It is shorter, somewhat leafier, and is reported to have a somewhat better protein content throughout the growing season. Sodar wheatgrass, western wheatgrass #456, and Montana wheatgrass maintained good stands through the 1975 season. Montana wheatgrass (a selection from Agropyron albicans) does not seem as vigorous as the other two varieties. Sodar continues to exhibit a rather fine-leaved character as contrasted to the other two wheatgrass varieties. The stands of Lodorm green stipa and of green stipa (SCS) showed additional improvement in the 1975 season. The stands of these varieties, however, would still be rated at fair to low good. The Alti wildrye plots showed little or no improvement in the 1975 season. It is doubtful now whether these plots will become productive during the life of the trial.

Table 9. Average yields of grass varieties in the grass adaptation trial seeded in 1972.
Variety Dry-wt. yield - lbs/acre 3-year average yield
1973 1974 1975
Turkey brome --- 5355 5679 55261
Topar pub. whtgr. #759 3551 4042 4999 4197
Lincoln bromegrass 1512 5001 4280 3598
Topar pub. whtgr. (Pull.) 1646 3629 4237 3171
Mandan 404 brome 1630 3772 3587 2996
Nordan crested whtgr. 2199 2484 4176 2953
Lodorm green stipa --- 2418 3309 28641
Sodar wheatgrass 829 3804 3692 2775
Mandan wildrye 1427 3927 2872 2742
Durar hard fescue 1136 3794 2302 2411
Western whtgr. #456 1381 2689 3081 2384
Vinall Russian wildrye 471 3891 2766 2376
Montana wheatgrass 711 3679 2724 2371
Green stipa (SCS) --- 1850 2700 22751
Sheep fescue --- 2246 2270 22581
Basin wildrye (SCS) --- --- 5286 ---
Basin wildrye (Pull.) --- --- 3706 ---
Alti wildrye (SCS) 2614 ---2 --- ---
Alti wildrye (Sask.) 1933 ---2 --- ---
Average 1618 3505 3628 2993
12-year average yields.

2Plots overgrown with slender wheatgrass and not harvested after 1973.

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