Effect of Bermudagrass Height on Clover Establishment
- T. L. Springer
Interseeding cool-season forage legumes into bermudagrass [Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers.] can extend the grazing season and increase forage quality. Common (cultivar unknown) and ‘Regal’ white clover (Trifolium repens L.) and ‘Dixie’ and ‘Tibbee’ crimson clover (T. incarnatum L.) were sown at 7000 pure live seed/plot into ‘Tifton- 44’ bermudagrass sod. The experimental design was a 4×4 Latin square with bermudagrass height (2, 7, 12, or 17 cm) as main plot treatments and legume cultivar as subplot treatments. There was a linear response in percentage legume ground cover with increasing bermudagrass heights. For every 5-cm increase in bermudagrass height there was approximately a 2% reduction in ground cover for crimson clover and 10% for white clover. Crimson clover establishment (89%) was greater than white clover (51%), but stands of crimson quickly declined suggesting that it should be reseeded in years with excessive summer rainfall.
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