Is anyone using the newer crabgrass varieties in their pastures?
You mean, like fescue? Is that the same a crabgrass? If so, yes, it’s nice, tough and drought resistant. We have the nematode free type.
Yes - we seeded with red river crabgrass along with Bermuda and Bahia. We’re in the southeast (North Carolina)
Entirely different grasses
And yes, an Ag Agent friend has a Red River Crabgrass plot that is going very well (also in NC)
There must be different varieties of crabgrass. The stuff here grows wild down roadways. It set up shop by the road and has steadily encroached inwards into my pasture. Nothing will kill it without killing the grass and the horses will not even touch it. My yard will be grazed down and the only thing growing tall is the crabgrass.
It looks pretty but I can’t imagine intentionally growing that for forage. And it stinks when you mow it.
Yes, there are many different varieties, not all of which are commercially available, but Red River has been around a while. It makes for very good grazing and hay. Since it is still a grass, no, you can’t kill it without killing the other grasses, but there are pre-emergent controls, which inhibit seed germination in general.
Lots and lots of horses love it. Not all like it.
I think different varieties taste different to horses. Back when I fed bermuda hay sometimes I would get bales with crabgrass in them. The crabgrass was harder to cure than the bermuda but when it was cured it smelled wonderful and the horses loved it. I do think it is higher in sugar than bermuda and maybe that is why they loved it.
Now that I am feeding orchard grass I have gotten some bales with crabgrass in them and the horses HATE it. Sometimes they refuse to eat the whole bale with the crabgrass in it even though it has cured fine.
Alabama crabgrass=good, Tennessee crabgrass=bad. ??? I do not know the answer.
I was asking about the newer crab grasses that have been specifically designed for summer forage, not the “get out of my beautiful yard” weedy growth type of crabgrass.
But one person’s weed is another person’s wonderful forage grass. I have coastal Bermuda pastures for grazing, but when it starts growing into the shrubbery around the house, it by my definition then becomes a weed.