Forage trials

Benefits of Improved Forage Varieties Beyond Your Grandfather's Grasses

When we think of farming and the agriculture of yesteryears, images of our grandparents and fields of swaying grass come to mind. But the agriculture landscape is evolving rapidly, and so are the needs of modern producers. Particularly, the discussion around improved forage varieties is one that stretches beyond nostalgic visions. It's about practical—almost essential—advancements for sustainable and productive farming.


Improved forage varieties are heralding not just better nutrition for our livestock but also a path toward environmental friendliness and even increased profits. But what do these "new-age" grasses really bring to the pasture, and why should producers look beyond the cost of seed when considering their options? The answer is in the numerous ways these varieties are tailored to meet multiple, interwoven needs.

Benefits Beyond Common Varieties

Increased Yield and Quality

It's not just a case of volume over the old-fashioned variety. Yes, improved forages can increase yield, but more importantly, they provide a quality of forage that can significantly enhance animal performance.

Better Palatability

Have you noticed how some grasses just taste better to your animals? It's not a myth—it's the science of forage breeding at work. Improved forages are often bred for superior palatability, so much so that animals graze with gusto, ensuring they're getting their fill of what’s best for them.

Enhanced Nutritional Value and Better Digestibility

When we think of nourishing our herds, we often aim for quantity, but it's the quality that truly matters. Enhanced nutritional value and better digestibility mean the world of difference not just in the health of our animals, but in the ecological footprint of our farming practices. By choosing forages that are easier for livestock to digest, we're ensuring that more of the nutrients are utilized efficiently and supporting our animals in achieving their full potential. With every bite, they're not just surviving; they're thriving.

Disease Resistance

With unpredictable climates and global trade leading to new potential diseases, resistant forages are vital in maintaining a productive pasture. Resistant varieties are not just about survival; they mean less pesticide use, which spells savings and, crucially, reduced environmental impact.

Environmental Sustainability

Improved forage varieties not only directly benefit livestock and the immediate environment but also contribute significantly to broader sustainability efforts. These new breeds of grasses, with their deeper rooting systems, are champions in soil conservation, reducing erosion and improving water retention. This means our beloved landscapes are nurtured and preserved for future generations, while ensuring that the waterways remain clear and unpolluted. Furthermore, healthier, more resilient grasses support better animal performance, leading to happier, more productive livestock. This cycle of nurturing and care reflects a deeper understanding and respect for our natural world, echoing the tender stewardship we must all partake in. Through these advancements, we are not just farming; we are caring for every blade of grass and every creature that grazes, fostering a world that thrives on empathy and shared responsibility. 

Economic Benefits: A Better Return on Investment

When we lovingly invest in the health and happiness of our livestock through improved forage varieties, we're not just doing right by them; we're setting up a foundation for more robust economic returns. Better animal performance is a direct outcome of the higher nutritional value and enhanced palatability of these modern forages. This means animals reach market or productive weight more efficiently and with less feed, translating to significant savings in feed costs over time. Additionally, healthier animals are less prone to disease, which minimizes the need for medical interventions and further reduces costs. This cycle of optimization doesn’t only apply to large-scale operations but speaks to the heart of every family farm, echoing the wisdom and warmth of generations past with the promise of a more sustainable and profitable future. In essence, by nurturing our livestock with the best of what science and care can offer, we're nurturing our future, ensuring that the return on our investment extends beyond the immediate financial to encompass a legacy of health, sustainability, and shared prosperity.

Challenges and Considerations

Initial Investment

There's no denying that the outlay for improved forage seed is often higher, but it’s an investment with significant returns in terms of livestock performance and long-term sustainable land management.

Adaptation Period

Any change requires an adjustment period, and moving to improved forages is no different. But just as we adapt to new technology over time, the move to superior grasses will become second nature once on-farm practices adjust.


Forage management with newer varieties might require a little more attention, but the rewards in terms of optimal growth, usage, and longevity far outweigh the extra efforts.


Don't dismiss improved forage varieties as pricey grass. They are so much more—they're investment pieces. Pieces that can make your farm more profitable, sustainable, and productive. With the myriad of benefits these advancements offer, it's a disservice to your operation not to at least consider them.

It’s a step forward from your grandfather's grasses to the grasses of our children's future. And in a world where agriculture faces new challenges every year, these subtly green blades are a beacon of hope and innovation in an industry that must continue to adapt and evolve. It’s a time for change—for sustainable, smarter agriculture—and improved forage varieties are playing a key role in that transformation.


Ready to Plant? Check out our full Professional Forage Collection

Take Me There