Between 2001 and 2003 Agroscope FAL Reckenholz and RAC Changins, the federal research stations, tested 19 varieties of meadow fescue and 13 varieties of red fescue. The varieties were compared in yield, juvenile development, vigour, persistence, disease resistance, competitive ability and adaptation to higher altitudes. With red fescue the winter hardiness was also accounted for. An index value was calculated from the data, allowing for a direct comparison of the tested varieties. The following varieties of meadow fescue obtained the minimum index value necessary for recommendation: FP 6, FP 7 and FP 8. These varieties have yet to fulfil the legal obligations concerning their commercialisation so that they can be made eligible for entry onto the «list of recommended varieties of forage plants». None of the tested new varieties of red fescue reached the index value that is required for recommendation.
Spring J.-L-, Zufferey V., Verdenal T., Reynard J.-S., Lorenzini F., Bourdin G., Blouin A., Carlen C., Jermini M., Morisoli R., Ferretti M.
Five Merlot clones bred in Switzerland are currently being distributed by the certification sector. A multiyear trial conducted by Agroscope in Gudo (Canton of Ticino) has made it possible to compare them with French and Italian reference clones and to highlight their very good performances.
Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi are important for healthy soils and crops. A pan-European study shows that plant-protection products adversely affect these fungi, reducing their ability to supply plants with phosphorus via their roots.
Birdsfoot trefoil and sainfoin are used in mixtures for perennial hay meadows and for tannin-containing fodder. Agroscope is adding two new cultivars of birdsfoot trefoil to the ‘List of Recommended Varieties of Forage Plants’, whilst there is no change in the case of sainfoin.