Browsing Journal of Range Management, Volume 38, Number 5 (September 1985) by Subjects
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Germination, Forage Yield, and Seed Production of American Sloughgrass (Beckmannia syzigachne)Germination, forage yield, and seed production characteristics were studied in American sloughgrass (Beckmannia syzigachne (Steud.) Fern.), a valuable wetland forage species in the northwestern and northcentral states. Germination of field-collected caryopses from northeastern Montana, stored at 7 degrees C for 60 days post-harvest, was significantly (P<0.05) higher under alternating temperatures (7 degrees C for 15 h and 21 degrees C for 9 h in each 24-h period) than at constant 21 degrees C. Germination percentages greater than 60% were found for freshly harvested greenhouse-produced spikelets and caryopses after 14 days in complete darkness, and no significant differences were detected between complete darkness and 15 h dark/9 h light treatments under alternating temperatures. Greenhouse-produced caryopses were significantly heavier and exhibited significantly higher germination than caryopses from field collections. A Montana field collection and a seed increase of that collection significantly (P<0.05) outyielded a local South Dakota collection for both forage and seed at Brookings, South Dakota. Overall mean dry matter forage and mature seed yields were 2,700 and 540 kg/ha, respectively. Forage yields at early-head of the seed increase population planted at 15, 18, and 21 kg/ha were not significantly different and had an overall mean of 5,000 kg/ha. These preliminary data indicate that the potential of B. syzigachne as a cultivated forage for cropland depressions in the Northern Great Plains does not appear to be limited by complex germination requirements, low forage yield, or weak seed production.