Random mutterings, observations, and comments on what ever comes to mind. Photos will be posted.
I didn't know switch grass might be used for fuel. Interesting!
There is talk about switching alcohol plants from corn to switch grass. Alcohol has become a major part of gasoline.
We 'take so much for granted' just driving by these fields.
Prairie grass fields are rare and far between, but may be a wave of the future. In a drought year like this prairie grass not only survives, but prospers. Their roots go down ten feet of more, so moisture on the surface doesn't matter all that much. These pictures were taken in late July with just over an inch of rain for the entire month.
I don't think most people realize how important the prairie grasses are...Nice photos!
I am guessing, but I suspect that these grasses will become more important in the future than they are now. The farm where they are growing is an experiment to see how practical it is to grow prairie grass and see if it can be profitable. So far all the evidence is not in on the profit question, but they do have a real income from selling grass seed, hay, and grass fat cattle. Some of this grass seed sells for $100+ per pound, that's $200,000 a ton.
Good for cattle to graze? I'm surprised by the height of it. Or short people?!?
Both switch grass and big blue stem are great cattle feeds. The people are walking next to the cordgrass which is taller. Or they need to get taller cattle.
That's some mighty tall grass! Seems, as I recall, the Bluestem in Texas was, well...bluer. Any thoughts on that? I envy your trek through the tall grasses; it's on my bucket list. Did you see any critters? If you saw snakes, I might just have to remove it from my bucket list.
There are many varieties of bluestem, and they look different at different times of year. No snakes in evidence, but many birds, hawks, bobolinks, and meadow larks. Didn't see them, but there are also foxes on the farm as well as a deer and skunk.
I've seen a few prairies with grass like this on my travels. Love the look of it blowing in the wind. Remember reading though about how hard it was for the wagon trains trying to cross through it.
The grass is so tall!
South Dakota is in the region of tall grass prairie. This was the feed source for many millions of American bison. Herds of a million or more bison roamed from central Canada to South Texas.