BETTER GRASSES FOR ROADSIDES

The growing importance of maintenance costs and environmental aesthetics dictates the need to develop better roadside grasses. More than a thousand varieties or strains of 36 species were established in 4-sq yd (3.3-sq m) plots along 8 roadsides throughout New Jersey and 3 experiment station sites over 5 years. Coarse grasses, including Kentucky 31 tall fescue and redtop, consistently produced conspicuous, persistent seed heads that detract from the appearance of the grassy landscape. Finer turf grasses, including certain varieties of Kentucky bluegrasses and 4 fine fescues, established readily and produced fewer and less objectionable seed stalks. Perennial ryegrass varieties initially produced an abundance of foliage and seed stalks, excessively crowded associated grasses, and disappeared after 2 years of low-intensity management. Outstanding performance of spreading fine fescues at several locations prompted the development of a new variety,, Fortress, synthesized from locally collected elite plants. Commercial production of Fortress and a superior Chewings variety, Banner, is anticipated. Such grasses should improve the quality of roadside mixtures, particularly when used with common varieties of Kentucky bluegrasses such as Kenblue. The importance of seed-free mulch is shown. It appears inappropriate to try to keep down vigorous species with frequent mowing or totolerate their coarse appearance when unmowed. Better appearance with less mowing can be achieved with properly established mixtures of superior varieties of fine fescues and Kentucky bluegrasses.

Media Info

  • Media Type: Print
  • Features: Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: pp 30-41
  • Monograph Title: Mitigating adverse environmental effects of highway construction
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00129475
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 0309024552
  • Files: TRIS, TRB
  • Created Date: Sep 28 1977 12:00AM