The agricultural value of Phalaris tuberosa
Of the twenty-six species of the Phalaris genus of plants; Phalaris tuberosa has proved the most useful from the agronomic point of view. The species has been variously known as Phalaris comutata, Phalaris bulbosa, Toowoomba grass and Canary grass. It has been grown in New Zealand mainly as a constituent of certain pasture mixtures but has not proved its value for certain reasons which will be indicated later. Mainly as a result of investigations at the Waite Research Institute, South Australia, this grass has given promise of being a valuable addition to the useful pasture species, and the result has been that it is being cultivated with considerable success in many parts of the Commonwealth. During the past two years it has been sown on a number of properties throughout Canterbury and numerous enquiries are being made concerning the agronomic features of the grass and its future possibilities. The plant itself is a tall, strong growing perennial with one or more swellings in the region of the lower stem internode. The blade of the leaf is very long, broad, flat and bluish-green in colour. The ligule is one of the longest in any of the grasses being almost as long as the leaf is wide. In habit, the plant, if not grazed, grows in clumps up to 3 ft. high producing a great bulk of herbage. The tall stems terminate in very closely comgressed panicles bearing a rather low yield of seed. Usually the yield of seed per plant is 2-3% of the total weight compared with 20-30% in the ryegrass. The seed is oval, flattened, moderate in size (300,000 per lb. compared with 240,000 per lb. in the case of Perennial Ryegrasses.... [Show full abstract]
Fields of Research070305 Crop and Pasture Improvement (Selection and Breeding); 070101 Agricultural Land Management
TypeConference Contribution - Published (Conference Paper)
Copyright © The Authors and New Zealand Grassland Association.