University of Missouri Extension

M181, New February 2012

Dairy Grazing: Selecting the Right Forage

Eastern gamagrass (Tripsacum dactyloides (L.) L.)

Warm-season grasses

Eastern gamagrass, the king of bunchgrasses, is used for pasture, hay and silage. It grows well in wetter areas but prefers deep, well-drained soils. Eastern gamagrass lends itself to pasture-based operations because it has a more even distribution of yield over the grazing season than do many other warm-season grasses. It also has better forage quality than many other warm-season grasses. Despite these advantages, eastern gamagrass has a few problems. Seed production is difficult, and gamagrass is slow to establish. Furthermore, it is easily overgrazed. Eastern gamagrass grows well throughout Missouri but is most popular in the central and western regions of the state. Despite its limitations, eastern gamagrass can be an important part of a forage system.

Eastern gamagrassEastern gamagrass
 

Yield distributionYield distribution of eastern gamagrass in Missouri.
 

Seed head
Seed head

Collar region
Collar region


M181 Dairy Grazing: Selecting the Right Forage | University of Missouri Extension

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