Tall Oat Grass


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Tall Oat Grass

 

(Arrhenatherum elatius), an herbaceous forage grass. Tall oat grass is a tufted, perennial, spring cereal measuring 80–160 cm tall. The upper surface of the leaves is slightly rough. The inflorescence is panicled, and the spikelets are two-flowered (the lower flower is underdeveloped). The root system deeply penetrates the soil, thereby making the plant drought resistant. The plant does not tolerate frosts well.

Tall oat grass grows wild throughout Europe and in North Africa and Asia. It grows on meadows in the European USSR and in mountain forest meadows in Middle Asia. The plant prefers fertile and well-drained loam and peat soils; it tolerates flooding poorly. Tall oat grass grows rapidly and develops early in spring.

Hay with an admixture of tall oat grass mown at the onset of flowering is a good feed for horses and cattle. The yield of hay from a hectare of grassland consisting mostly of tall oat grass is 40–60 quintals per hectare. One hundred kilograms of hay contains 46.7 feed units and 3.4 kg of digestible protein. The green mass has a bitter taste and is eaten by cattle only in mixtures with other gramineous and leguminous herbs.

REFERENCES

See references under RYE GRASS.

N. K. TATARINOVA

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