Weeping Lovegrass

Weeping Lovegrass (Eragrostis curvula)

  • Widely adapted - prefer sandy soils
  • Where frost occurs, grass dies back.
  • Hay crop

    Requirements and uses

    • Mostly dryland in SA
    • Widely adapted – prefer sandy soils
    • Performs best in areas with 650 mm rain/anum
    • Where frost occurs, grass dies back. Grows again early spring
    • Eragrostis curvula fares best as a hay crop
    • Quality is dependent on the fertility of the soils
    • Low fertility = poor quality
    • N the key to high, good quality fodder production

     


    Varieties:
    Ermelo: Ermelo is the most popular variety being used in South Africa, especially in the colder summer rainfall areas. It can survive severe frost and will grow on almost any soil, even on sandy soils with a low pH. Preference to higher rainfall areas (600mm and more), but does not adapt well to wet, waterlogged soils.

     

    Establishment

    • Use Teff with Eragrostis where weeds are a problem – early cut essential
    • 4-6kg Teff

     

    Soil preparation

    • Fine, firm seedbed, free of weeds – Eragrostis curvula seed is very small
    • Seedbed should be rolled before and after sowing
    • October to December – weed free area

     

    Utilization as hay

    • Ensure high protein content – cut before it flowers
    • For higher DM – cut later – not later than early flowering
    • Hay cannot be cut before November
    • Leaf stage: highest CP, digestibility and intake

     

    Utilization as grazing

    • Best early in season
    • Quality and quantity decreases later in season

     

    Specifications
    Sowing rate (uncoated)
    5 - 8 kg/ha
    Sowing rate (uncoated)
    8 - 12 kg/ha
    Subtropical Grasses

    Subtropical (warm season, C4) perennial grasses are traditionally grown in summer rainfall environments. However, they can be successfully grown in the Mediterranean environments due to a combination of drought tolerance and the mild winter conditions...