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Habits of growth: It is rather easy to secure a good stand of Tall Oat Grass. The young plants make a vigorous and rapid growth, sometimes producing flowers the first year. If competition with other grasses is not too keen, it is productive for many years. Tall Oat Grass starts early in the spring and requires about the same time as Orchard Grass for its development.



Agricultural value: When grown for hay it does well when mixed with Orchard Grass, Meadow Fescue and Red Clover. As it grows in tufts, it should not be sown alone but always with other grasses. It should be cut when in bloom if used for hay. If left only a few days after flowering is over, its feeding value is consider-ably lessened as the stems get hard and woody and quickly lose their nutritive constituents.



Pasture: Tall Oat Grass makes a quick start after cutting and stands pasturing well. In spite of this, it is not as suitable for pasture as for hay, because the green plants have a rather bitter taste which makes them unattractive to stock until the animals are accustomed to the flavour. In a pasture it should therefore be used only in small quantities with other forage plants. When grown alone for hay or pasture, thirty to thirty-five pounds of seed should be sown to the acre.



Seed: When grown for seed, Tall Oat Grass should be cut as soon as the spikelets begin to take a yellowish tinge. Like Wild Oats, it drops its seed very readily, which makes early cutting advisable. The seed may be harvested and threshed like oats.



Quality of seed: Good commercial seed is greenish-yellow with a brownish or reddish tint. It weighs about ten pounds per bushel.

Cold biting winter mars our hop'd for hay.—Shakespeare, 3 Henry VI., Act 4, Sc. VIII, 1592.

Let pasture be stored and fenced about, And tillage set forward, as needeth without; Before ye do open your purse, to begin with any thing doing, for fancy within.

—Thomas Tusser, Five Hundrelh Panties of Husbandrie, 1557.

The Transmutation of Species is, in the vulgar Phylosophy pronounced impossible: And certainly it is a thing of difficulty, and requireth deep search in Nature: But seeing there appear some manifest instances of it, the opinion of Impossibility is to be rejected, and the means thereof to be found out.—Bacon, Natural History, 1625.


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