From 2012 to 2014, Agroscope conducted comparative trials on 17 varieties of tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea Schreber) and two varieties of xFestulolium krasanii at seven experimental sites. All varieties were grown in pure stands and in mixture with clover. The parameters assessed were dry matter yield, juvenile development, regrowth speed, general impression, competitive ability, persistence, digestibility of organic matter and resistance to leaf diseases and to winter conditions. For each variety, an index-value based on measurements and observations of yield was calculated, allowing an accurate comparison of the varieties. According to the results, none of the new varieties reached the index-value required for recommendation, whereas all of the previously recommended varieties can remain on the List of Recommended Varieties of Forage Plants.
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.