Overseeding novel forages in Oregon as a model for enhancing perennial grass pastures in the Pacific Northwest

Progress report for OW21-365

Project Type: Professional + Producer
Funds awarded in 2021: $75,000.00
Projected End Date: 05/31/2023
Host Institution Award ID: G323-21-W8614
Grant Recipient: Oregon State University
Region: Western
State: Oregon
Principal Investigator:
Dr. Serkan Ates
Oregon State University
Co-Investigators:
Fara Brummer
Oregon State University
Dr. David Hannaway
Oregon State University
Ian McGregor, M.S.
Oregon State University, Klamath Basin Research and Extension Ce
Guojie Wang
Oregon State University - Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research C
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Project Information

Summary:

Pasture-based livestock production is one of the primary agricultural production systems in Pacific Northwest (PNW), with total pasturelands exceeding 15 million hectares. These pastures are dominated by cool-season grasses and weedy annuals. Nitrogen fixing legumes and forbs are absent, and in many cases, soil health is compromised both structurally and chemically.  Both production and feeding value of cool-season grasses decrease rapidly with increasing plant maturity and physiological dormancy toward summer. This, in turn, causes reductions in grazing days, animal performance, water use efficiency, and farm income. A practical and inexpensive approach to enhance these pastures is through diversification by overseeding forage species that have high nutritive values and bioactive compounds.  This pasture improvement method may greatly increase productivity, carrying capacity, resource use efficiency, and sustainability of pastures. Additionally, it is possible to improve animal health while reducing the nitrogen input requirement using pasture forbs with high nutritive value and secondary metabolites. This practical approach to renovating compromised pastures will result in good stewardship of land and water resources. The apparent benefits of diversifying existing pasture through overseeding legumes and other forbs will be demonstrated by on farm trials, field tours and workshops. We anticipate the following outcomes: (1) increased pasture and animal productivity through extending the mid-summer grazing period and increasing forage quality, (2) reduced environmental footprint of livestock farming through increased use of N2-fixing legumes resulting in less nitrogen fertilization and nitrate leaching, and (3) increased adoption of overseeding legumes and other forbs resulting from increased knowledge of producers.

Project Objectives:
  1. Quantify the persistence and yield of pasture grasses, herbs, perennial and self-regenerating annual pasture legumes incorporated into grass-dominated pastures in both rainfed and irrigated production systems for higher animal production, extended grazing season, agronomic and ecological benefits (e.g. biological N2 fixation, nectar source for pollinators).
  2. Investigate the effect of soil amendments (lime, N, B and Mo) in legume production and biological N2 fixation potentials.
  3. Compare the bio-economic efficiency (cost-benefit analyses) of overseeding forbs in grass- dominated pastures with control pastures.
  4. Successfully communicate best management practices through an integrated extension message.
Timeline:

 

Year 1 - 2021

Activities

Jan-March

Apr-Jun

July-Sept

Oct-Dec

Planning

 

 

 

 

Overseeding in Eastern OR sites

 

 

 

 

Overseeding in Western OR sites

 

 

 

 

Data collection

 

 

 

 

Field day/Webinar in eastern OR sites

 

 

 

 

Extension publications/ training manuals

 

 

 

 

Reporting

 

 

 

 

 

Year 2 - 2022

Data collection

 

 

 

 

Field day/Webinar in western OR sites

 

 

 

 

Field day/Webinar in eastern OR sites

 

 

 

 

Reporting

 

 

 

 

Cooperators

Click linked name(s) to expand/collapse or show everyone's info

Research

Materials and methods:

This two-year project will be implemented in representative pasture-based livestock farming systems across various climatic zones of Oregon. The farm locations include Lakeview, SE Oregon, Union, NE Oregon (desert highland), Willamette Valley, NW Oregon (high rainfall, oceanic climate), and SW Oregon (Mediterranean climate). The project will consist of agro-ecological characterization studies, replicated on-farm trials, and training components. Site-specific technology assessment and refinement will be accomplished through multi-location, adaptive, on-farm trials. The field studies will investigate the influence of introduced pastures species, agronomic management practices, and grazing strategies on agricultural productivity and water use efficiency. The project-led interventions will be compared with conventional pasture farming practices. On-farm studies will include comparison of several grasses, deep rooting-perennial legumes, self-regenerating annual clovers, and pasture herbs for their nutrient utilization potentials under high and low inputs of irrigation and fertility management in several agroecoregions across Oregon. The overall goal of this proposal is to improve pasture production, nutritive value, and resource use efficiency through overseeding legumes and herbs with high bioactive compounds into grass-dominated pastures located in key agroecological zones of Oregon.

Objectives are to:

  1. Quantify the persistence and yield of pasture grasses, herbs, perennial and self-regenerating annual pasture legumes incorporated into grass-dominated pastures in both rainfed and irrigated production systems for higher animal production, extended grazing season, agronomic and ecological benefits (e.g. biological N2 fixation, nectar source for pollinators).
  2. Investigate the effect of soil amendments (lime, N, B and Mo) in legume production and biological N2 fixation potentials.
  3. Compare the bio-economic efficiency (cost-benefit analyses) of overseeding forbs in grass- dominated pastures with control pastures.

Location 1. Desert highland areas: Overseeding perennial grasses, legumes and herbs in irrigated pastures.

Irrigated systems in Lake and Union Counties are utilized for grazing or hay production, since primary agricultural products of the county are beef cattle and hay production (USDA Census of Agriculture, 2017). Irrigated systems provide consistent water application for growing livestock forages on the deeper soils in the county. However, over time, soil nutrients have been depleted and perennial forage species declined in quantity and quality. The common mode of operation is to till the existing pasture and establish a new one.  However, this is an expensive strategy with no profit realized until the second year.  Our project site is on pasture, currently dominated by Kentucky bluegrass (Poa pratensis L.) which has formed a thatch layer, affecting water infiltration. In addition, due to it is physiological dormancy in mid-summer, irrigation is ineffective for producing feed for half of the growing season.  As irrigation cost is high, other strategies for increasing pasture productivity need to be employed.

Hypothesis: Summer forage production can be greatly increased through incorporating legume and forb species, also improving the forage quality and water use efficiency in irrigated pasture systems.

On-farm studies will be undertaken in 2 farms in Lake County and one farm in Union County in each farm.  We will divide the field into three pasture plots and overseed either a simple mixture of (2 species) orchardgrass (Dactylics glomerata L.)-birdsfoot trefoil (Lotus corniculatus L.) (Treatment 1) or a diverse mixture (6 species) composed of orchardgrass, festulolium (×Festulolium Asch. & Graebn.), chicory, plantain, white clover (Trifolium repens L.) and birdsfoot trefoil (Treatment 2) into the existing grass-dominated pastures in June 2021. One subplot that will not be overdrilled will serve as the control (Treatment 3). These species were selected based on our initial success in our ongoing WSARE Farmer/Rancher Project (ID:602381). Each pasture plot will be split into 3 subplots and applied Nitrogen at either (i) 50 kg/ha, (ii)), 100 kg/ha or (iii) no N application (control) to assess their effects on pasture production, nutritive value and biological N2 fixation. All legume seeds will be inoculated with the appropriate rhizobia. All plots will be fertilized based on soil test results.

Prior to planting, the site will be grazed to 5 cm to provide light and effective irrigation for germinating seedlings. Following the establishment of the overseeded plants, pasture will be grazed in late summer.  We will collect data on seasonal pasture biomass yields, forage nutritional quality, grazing days, water use efficiency, soil quality, and cost of production.  For the grazed pastures, growth will be measured between each grazing cycle. Prior to drying in an oven (65 °C) to constant weight, sub–samples will be sorted into botanical fractions. Samples will be analyzed for their nutritive value. A well-mixed bulk sample will be ground in a Wiley mill with a 1-mm stainless steel sieve (Thomas/Wiley) for chemical analyses using Association of Official Analytical Chemists methods (AOAC, 2016).

2021 - 2022  Adjusted materials and methods

LAKEVIEW (John Shine):  One ranch in Lake County (Willow Springs Ranch, Keith Barnhart) was removed from this project as the producer decided to put his land up for sale and not pursue any research activities. The other ranching operation  (KV Bar Ranch, John Shine) is very engaged in this project.  To that cause, we implanted this project on a 15 acre field, containing 2 soil types - a silt loam (majority = 70% of the area) and a clay loam, both running in an east-west direction.  This field is flood irrigated and was chosen due to water reliability in the extreme drought year of 2021.  The field is sod heavy due to rhizomatous plant activity of Kentucky bluegrass and heavy white clover.  Overseeding was accomplished with a Great Plains 12 foot wide, no till drill.  Legumes were appropriately innoculated and seed boxes were calibrated.  Field was split with the simple mix overseeded in the east half of the field, and the diverse mix overeeded in the west half.  Fields were fertilized north to south in two replicated strips against seeding treatments.  Fertilizer rates were:  F1 = 25 kg. nitrogen (N)/hectare and F2 = 50 kg. N/ hectare at 21% N in ammonium sulfate  (F1 = 119 kg/hectare and 238 kg/hectare of ammonium sulfate fertilizer).  Forage was sampled for biomass and quality by Clipping 1/4 meter frames randomly in each treatment.  

UNION COUNTY:  (John Sheehy and Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Station (EOARC)):  

Soil tests from 2021 show alkaline fields in producer Sheehy's field with a very suitable neutral pH at the EOARC field and levels of nitrogen and phosphorus at both sites

EOARC alfalfa field was treated with a glyphosate application at 16 oz./acre.  Evaluation of overseeding was through density counts of emerged plants.  This was done with a 2x2 ft. quadrat (4 sq ft. = 0.37 sq. meter) and replicated 5 times per site

Location 2. Willamette Valley dryland sheep farm evaluation of self-regenerating annual legumes in a rainfed sheep farm.

Early to late maturing  subterranean clover and balansa clover cultivars will be over-drilled into existing pastures on a dryland sheep farm located in the Willamette Valley, Oregon, in the fall of 2021. We will divide the field into four pasture plots and overseed either early maturing subterranean and balansa clover mix (Treatment 1), or mid-maturing subterranean and balansa clover mix (Treatment 2), or late maturing subterranean and balansa clover mix (Treatment 3) into the existing grass-dominated pastures in each block. One subplot that will not be overdrilled will serve as the control (Treatment 4). Each pasture plot will be split into 4 subplots and applied either (i) lime (2 t/ha), (ii) micronutrients (boron and molybdenum), (iii) lime and micronutrients, or (iv) no lime or micronutrient application (control) to assess their effects on seed yield ( for persistence of annual legumes) and biological N2 fixation. The rates for the micronutrients will be determined based on soil test results. The seasonal forage production and self-regenerating potential (persistence) of these legumes will be monitored under the current management practices of these farms. Herbage growth rates of each pasture combination will be measured at each grazing cycle. All plots will be fertilized based on soil test results and recommendations of the Western Oregon and Western Washington Pasture Fertilizer Guide (http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/xmlui/bitstream/handle/1957/20636/fg63-e.pdf).

For the grazed pastures, growth will be measured inside 1-m² grazing exclosure cages. Prior to drying in an oven (65 °C) to constant weight, sub–samples will be sorted into botanical fractions. Samples will be analyzed for their nutritive value, including nitrogen and fiber determinations. For the quantification of the persistence of annual clover, seedlings of subterranean and balansa clover will be counted in two randomly placed quadrats in each plot containing these legumes in the fall of 2021, 2022 and 2023. Following summer grazing each year, 15 randomly selected soil cores will be collected to monitor the soil seed bank in each annual legume-containing plot. These soil cores will be bulked and washed through mesh sieves to remove soil; the retained legume seeds will be counted. Number of flowers and seeds per m2 will be quantified for balansa clover. During the peak growing season, we will investigate the root nodule development of legumes by randomly digging three legume plants of each species in each treatment. The nodules then will be scored and recorded. [Score of nodulation 0 (no nodule) to 5 (full of healthy pink nodules)]

2021 - 2022 Adjusted Materials and Methods

JUNCTION CITY (Cody Wood)

Fields were fertilized accordingly before planting, with the addition of lime to the micronutrient (MN) plot.  MN application consisted of boron and molybdenum which were applied in MN plots consisting of 10 X 5 meters on March 16, 2022

Although it was not listed in the original proposal, we have included another farm in n0rthern part of Willamette Valley, thanks to the support of Saddlebutte Ag by providing the seeds.

McMINNVILLE (Catherine Johnson) - The 80 acre field is of mixed terrain (2% - 30% slopes) Soil tests show 5 different soil types, with the majority of soils as a silty loam.  Soils were sampled on the entire, 8 acre  “steep” field (containing the micronutrient (MN) plots) and entire field “below” parents’ house (planted with birdsfoot trefoil (BFT)).  Lime was applied at 2T/acre to TMT 1 and 3 of micronutrient plot.  Slugs were baited with FeroxxTM  at 11.2 kg/ha. with Wizzer spinners.  During first attempted seedling counts, it was noted that all species had some germination but small size deterred successful identification.  MN application was initially adjusted and applied in two field applications.  Fields were rotationally grazed, beginning in late March.  Twelve cages were placed on the micronutrient plots, 3 per treatment

Location 3. Cattle farms in SW Oregon.

Hypothesis: Novel, deep-rooting perennial legumes and early-mid maturing annual clovers will provide a persistent and high quality forage in grass-dominated pastures and extend grazing season while reducing the input requirement for soil fertility.

These dryland cattle farms are located on flat and hill sites in SW, Oregon where average annual precipitation is 18.35 inches. These farms have both open and wooded pastures under white oak trees (Quercus alba). Most pastures predominantly contain annual grass and legume species. Medusahead (Taeniatherum caput-medusae) and foxtail barley grass (Hordeum jubatum) are major, highly problematic weed species. A visit to the farms and discussions with farmers in the field on October 12, 2020, prompted an idea to test a number of grass, legume and herb species for preliminary assessment for their persistence and production in the region. In replicated small plots (2 × 2 m), early and mid-maturing subterranean clover, balansa clover chicory aberlasting [a hybrid between white clover and Caucasian clover (Trifolium ambiguum L.), bigleaf trefoil (Lotus pedunculatus L.), alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.) and strawberry clover (Trifolium fragiferum L.) are currently being tested on three farms.

To increase the legume content of the pastures, we will investigate the persistence and productivity of a number of annual and perennial legumes in mixed pasture plots. Pasture mixtures containing either deep-rooted perennial legumes (birdsfoot trefoil, bigleaf trefoil, strawberry clover, aberlasting clover) (Treatment 1) or self-regenerating annual legumes (subterranean and balansa clovers) (Treatment 2) will be overseeded into a grass-dominated open and wooded pastures in both flat and hill sites in fall 2021 A diverse mixtures containing the species in both treatments will be planted in Treatment 3. Each pasture combination will include orchardgrass and a novel endophyte tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea L.), chicory, and plantain. Each pasture plot will be split into 4 subplots and applied either (i) lime (2 t/ha), (ii) micronutrients (boron, molybdenum), (iii) lime and micronutrients or (iv) no lime or micronutrient application (control) to assess their effects on biological N2 fixation. The same pasture and plant sampling procedure as described for Location 2 will be followed in the trials to be established in SW Oregon.  All legume seeds will be inoculated with the appropriate rhizobia at planting. All plots will be fertilized based on soil test results and recommendations of the Western Oregon and Western Washington Pasture Fertilizer Guide.

2021 - 2022 Adjusted Materials and Methods

We included  Bob's farm in Klamath falls in place of Keith Barnhart who experienced a shortage of water due to drought conditions and couldn't conduct the trial.

KLAMATH FALLS (Bob Buchanan)

Pastures were grazed in 2021, prior to overseeding with the simple and diverse mixes at 1/2 inch depth.  No fertilizer was applied in 2021.  For establishment evaluation, seedling count, forage biomass and forage quality were evaluated. Pasture samples were clipped in the field within a quarter meter frame and sent in for laboratory analysis of forage quality.  For the seedling count, samples were weighed, then a representative handful was taken, from which plants were counted

CENTRAL POINT  (Lynn Gladman)

A previous soil test shows a loam soil, slightly acidic soil lacking sufficient nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium.  Micronutrient plots for this project are contained within the main large pasture.  Seedling counts were done within a 0.01 m2 grid on the balansa and subclover

Table 1. Summary of research activities in 2021-2022 in Oregon by date, region, and producer name

Date E. OR. - Lakeview E. OR. - Union S.W. OR. - Klamath Falls S.W. OR.  - Central Point

W.V. OR. - North Plains

W.V. OR - Junction City 

4/6/2021   Sampled soil to 12 in. -dryland, irrigated, sanfoin and EOARC fields        
4/15/2021   Glyphosate at 16 oz./ac.  EOARC field        
4/19/2021   Harrowed EOARC alfalfa field        
4/22/2021 82 cow/calf, 50 days           
4/23/2021   Overseeded all fields w/ seeding mixtures         
4/24/2021   Irrigated Sheehy's pasture, followed by EOARC field        
5/9/2021   Irrigated Sheehy's field for 11.5 hours        
6/15/2021 Sampled soils randomly           
6/16/2021 Overseeded  field          
6/19/2021   Harrowed EOARC field        
6/21/2021 Fertilized field accordingly            
7/13/2021     Pastures overseeded  with prior grazing impact      
7/30/2021 Sampled forages for quality and biomass          
7/31/2021 83 cow/calf pairs (avg. wt. = 1500 lb. cows, 500 lb. calves)           
9/13/2021   Evaluated Sheehy's field  Random samples were clipped in the field for seedling counts and biomass      
9/14/21 Sampled forage for biomass after cattle grazing          
10/4/2021         Sampled soils and overseeded  "steep" & 20 ac. fields   
10/9/2021           Planted fields
10/11/2021       Overseeded north paddocks     
10/18/2021       Overseeded south paddocks     
10/26/2021         Seedlings too small to ID. Apparent slug damage noted  
10/27/2021         Applied lime TMT 1 and 3, in MN plot. Applied slug bait to 3.2 ha steep field  
10/28/2021         MNs  application   
11/3/2021       Applied lime to TMT 1 & 3 micronutrient (MN) plots (main large pasture)     
11/4/2021       Seedlings were too small to count    
12/1/2021         Small seedling size when checked  
12/21/21       Sampled soil from a) MN plot TMT 0 & 2, b) oak savannah field and c) south field    
3/9/2022         Remaining MNs applied. Plant damage noted.  Placed cages on MN plots  
3/16/2022           MNs applied
3/23/2022       Planned MN application & forage measurement    

E. OR = Eastern Oregon; S.W. OR = Southwest Oregon; W.V. OR = Willamette Valley, Oregon

 

 

Research results and discussion:

Results were measured through seedling counts for establishment success (all locations except Lakeview), and clipping forage post planting for biomass and quality parameters (Lakeview and Klamath Falls).  Results are summarized below in Table 2 a-e  (seedling counts) and Table 3a (forage quality at Lakeview) and 3b (biomass at Lakeview and Klamath Falls).  The Lakeview site established poorly with the simple mix and part of the diverse mix due to heavy rhizomatous activity and growing season of the pre-existing white clover that was difficult to graze out.  The white clover returned after heavy grazing pre-treatment and post seeding, smothering out most of our overseeding effort.  However, in the eastern half of the field, soil that had not been previously established with white clover had been seeded by producer John Shine in 2020 with excess seed from our previous western SARE project (Farmer Rancher grant #FW20-358).  This area had high growth and establishment success and was included with our clipping measurements. The site was clipped using a quarter meterframe after seeding and before cattle entry in late August, and again in mid-September, directly after cattle removal

Seedling counts are summarized by meterfor all sites to standardize comparisons.  

Results were variable by region and soil type but establishment was successful on all sites.  Micronutrient application on the western Oregon sites affected emerging plants differently based on plant species and reaction to amendment

TABLE 2a - Averaged Seedling density counts in Union (Eastern Oregon) on September 13, 2021

Site Treatment Forage common name Seedling count Seedling count/meter2
Sheehy IP1 Simple BFT2 3 8
    OG3 6 16
  Diverse  Plantain 2 5
    Chicory 2 5
    White Clover 5 14
    BFT 5 14
    OG 5 14
    Festulolium N/A N/A
Union Alfalfa Field Simple BFT 8 22
    OG 13 35
  Diverse Plantain 13 35
    Chicory 4 11
    White Clover N/A N/A
    BFT 6 16
    OG 7 19
    Festulolium 10 27

1 = Irrigated Pasture site; 2 = Birdsfoot trefoil; 3 = Orchardgrass

 

TABLE 2b -  Averaged Seedling density counts in Southwest Oregon (Klamath Falls) on September 21, 2021

Treatment Legume Grass

Seedling count /  meter2Legume

Seedling count/meter2Grass

Simple 0  54 0 216
Diverse 11 34 44 136
Control 0 40 0 160

TABLE 2C.  Averaged seedling density counts in Southwest Oregon (Central Point) on balansa and subclover seedling counts on December 1, 2021

Treatment

Balansa clover

Seedlings/m2

Sub clover
0*

1.6

160

1.5

150

1*

1.8

180

1.5

150

2*

1.9

190

0.7

70

3*

2.1

210

0.9

90

 

* Subplot micronutrient treatments are:  0 = no application, 1 = lime, 2 = lime and molybdenum (Mo), and 3 = lime, boron (B) and Mo

 

TABLE 2d - Averaged seedling density counts in Willamette Valley (North Plains) on balansa, subclover, and white clover on December 21, 2021 with two different methods:  0.0125 mring and 0.01 mgrid

 

Treatment 

Balansa clover count (ring)

Seedlings/meter2

Balansa clover seedling count (grid)

Seedlings/meter2

Subclover count (ring) 

Seedlings/m2

 

 

Subclover count (grid)

Seedlings/m2

White Clover count

(ring)

Seedlings/m2

White Clover count (grid)

Seedlings/m2

 

 Ring

Meter2

Grid (0.01 m2)

Meter2

 Ring (0.0125m2) Grid (0.01 m2)  Ring (0.0125m2) Grid (0.01 m2)
0

2.1

168

1.7

170

6

480

4.8

480

0 0
1

2.7

216

2.2

220

4.1

328

3.3

330

0.4

32

0.3

30

2

3.5

280

2.8

280

2.8

224

2.2

220

1.3

104

1

100

3

2.4

192

1.9

190

3.6

288

2.9

290

0.5

40

0.4

40

 

TABLE 2e. Averaged seedling density counts in Willamette Valley (Junction City) on balansa and subclover on December 21, 2021

Treatment Balansa clover per meter2 Subclover per meter2    
0 0 75    
1 75 0    
2 50 50    
3 0 75    
  75 175    
  125 125    
  125 125    

 

TABLE 3a - Forage quality, Lakeview, Oregon post overseeding by fertilizer treatments on September 14, 2021

 

Overseeding treatment Fertilizer treatment Dry Matter Crude Protein (%) Acid Detergent Fiber (%) Neutral Detergent Fiber (%) Fat (Ether Extract) (%)
Simple 25  30.24 18.93 28.62 43.39 4.57
Simple 50 33.86 14.65 33.44 46.75 4.21
Simple CONTROL 38.31 13.35 35.1 49.75 4.16
Diverse 25 30.33 15.7 29.17 43.01 5.26
Diverse 50 25.75 21.21 27.27 40.34 4.87
2020 Planting    21.52 22.29 28.47 31.83 5.44

Table 3b - Forage quantity (kg/ha) at Lakeview (August 30th pre-cattle entry and September 14, 2021 post cattle use) and Klamath Falls (September 13, 2021), Oregon

Treatment Lakeview  Klamath Falls
Simple

4260

870

 

2982
Diverse

3,760

810

 

3483
Control

4,760

 

 

3991
Last Year's Planting

14,760

2,180

 

 
Participation Summary
6 Producers participating in research

Research Outcomes

2 New working collaborations

Education and Outreach

5 Consultations

Participation Summary:

Education and outreach methods and analyses:

I have outreached our project information to two other producers, one of whom is in Washington  state.  In addition, I have been working with "Neutral Foods" business on the soil and carbon benefits of our project.

Fara Brummer has outreached this project to one other producer who is adopting the practice of overseeding on his ranch level enterprise in Adel, Oregon in order to increase forage quality and quantity, while improving his soil in his grass based fields.  In addition, she has been working with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) who is very interested in this practice in Lake County, Oregon.  They are working with another producer to implement this practice locally.  

A field day is planned at the Eastern Oregon (Lakeview) Oregon site on May 19th. 2022 (please see the poster attachment below)

A field (crop) tour is planned in Union, featuring the Sheehy ranch on June 21st. 2022

 

FINAL - Field Day - May19,2022 - Pasture field day, Shine

4 Farmers intend/plan to change their practice(s)
6 Farmers changed or adopted a practice

Education and Outreach Outcomes

10 Producers reported gaining knowledge, attitude, skills and/or awareness as a result of the project

Success Stories

    Success stories:

    Success stories are evident in every location.  One picture per site is included to show successes.

    Custom grazing operation from eastern Oregon:  rancher success through high establishment from a 2020 excess seed planting on our project field.  The rancher had participated in the western SARE Farmer-Rancher program and had seed left over from 2020.  He decided to use it on another field - the flood irrigated field we are using for this project.  He planted it on the edge of the field where there was bare soil.  The establishment was tremendous and as our results show    times more than the interseeding in the majority of this field which is heavily dominated by white clover.  The pictures below illustrate the high biomass.  An additional unexpected consequence was the heavy presence of pollinators (butterflies and bees), as well as the use by wildlife, evident through on site droppings.  The picture below was taken on July 19, 2021

    Lakeview field

    Another site in eastern Oregon benefited by overseeding an existing alfalfa field with decadent alfalfa by initially applying glyphosate, followed by  overseeding forages.  Additionally, a field in the same county with gaps in existing forage was converted to even forage distribution with overseeding as seen in the picture below

     

    Union field

    In southern Oregon's Central Point, a field benefitted from legume addition as is evident by healthy emergence of planted forages

    Central Point, Oregon

    In the moist and cool Wilamette Valley of Oregon, despite heavy grass, planted forages emerged in rows

     

    North Plains, Oregon

Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.