1. Pasture grasses are the most widely used type of forage in the world. They are typically perennial, warm-season grasses that are grown in pasture systems. The most common pasture grasses include bermudagrass, bahia grass, and fescue. These grasses are chosen for their high nutritional value and high yield of forage.
2. Bermudagrass is one of the most popular pasture grasses in the US. It is a highly palatable and nutritious grass that tolerates extreme temperatures and is deep rooted so it can withstand droughts and heavy grazing pressure. It has a high tolerance for traffic and foot traffic. It is a high yielding grass that produces medium to high quality hay and silage.
3. Bahia grass is a warm season perennial, commonly grown in areas with high temperatures and low rainfall. Bahia grass is noted for its deep root system which enables it to access water deep in the soil. It is also a high yielding grass and can tolerate heavy grazing and frequent mowing. Bahia grass is a great option for hay production and can be excellent for silage.
4. Fescue is a cool season grass that is most often used in areas with moderate temperatures and adequate rainfall. It is highly palatable and has excellent nutritional value for grazing livestock. Fescue can withstand close grazing and drought conditions. It is also highly adaptable to many soil types and does not require high inputs of fertilizer and pesticides.
5. Tall fescue is a different species of fescue that is more cold tolerant. It is often used in pastures for forage production and is well adapted to many soils. It is highly palatable and does well with frequent grazing. It is slow growing, but high yielding, and produces quality hay and silage.
6. Ryegrass is a cool season perennial that is highly productive and well adapted to many soil types. It is an excellent choice for hay production and can be used as a pasture grass in combination with other grass species. Ryegrass is quick to establish and produces high yields of good quality forage.
7. Orchardgrass is another cool season grass that is widely grown for pasture and hay. It is an attractive, perennial grass that has excellent palatability. Orchardgrass produces high yields of hay and is resistant to disease. It is recommended for haying and is a popular choice for grazing.
8. White clover is a common pasture grass that provides a host of benefits. It fixes nitrogen from the air into the soil and improves soil fertility. White clover is a highly palatable and nutritious grass that is often found in combination with perennial grasses for forage production. It is drought tolerant and can withstand heavy grazing pressure.