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B-Dahl bluestem for pasture

 
gardener
Posts: 3053
Location: Central Texas zone 8a
692
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I've been reading up on this. I bought a roll of hay to try out. I'm intrigued so far. My main thing was horse manure. Everywhere I put manure down (fed with coastal bermuda), up came the bermuda. This is terrible for the garden.

Reading from many sources,  this bluestem can be broadcast to plant. It needs little rain(14" a year). The seed sits until moisture is right.

I saw studies that showed 1 ant mound per acre vs 30 + mounds in bermuda. Not sure why this is, but also read you can smell it when it goes to seed. Not a nice smell. Wonder if this is why ants leave the area.

It doesn't spread by roots like bermuda, so the side effects of clearing from garden should be minimized.

Anyone have any comments or first hand experience? It's suited for down south like here in texas.

Protein is 8 to 10%
 
pollinator
Posts: 11777
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
1006
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I was just reading a bit about it recently and claims are that it doesn't spread like King Ranch Bluestem, which is such a nasty pest here.  If I were planting for pasture, personally I would plant only native grasses such as Little Bluestem, but that's because we're trying to foster native habitat for the wild critters, not for domestics.  So your goals are different.
 
wayne fajkus
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The ant deterrent makes a person think about it. It's intriguing from that perspective. And not spreading bermuda like I'm doing now.
 
Tyler Ludens
pollinator
Posts: 11777
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
1006
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Bermuda is the devil!
 
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I would be concerned about whether the fescue was one that harbors the harmful endophotes that plague tall fescue. Nothing is worth your animals aborting. I'm trying au grazer lespediza.
 
wayne fajkus
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Location: Central Texas zone 8a
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After feeding a round bale to the cows, it's obvious that they are eating a higher portion of it vs coastal bermuda bales. Theres much less of it remaining on the ground. It's like a 1" layer evenly scattered in a circle.  With bermuds, it's a bigger circle with remaining clumps being 6" high.

The ultimate goal is not bringing in hay at all. Right now I'm placing it in areas I think need help. I'm importing humus if that makes sense.
 
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