Improved Perennial Grasses 

Future Farm Industries CRC’s Improved Perennial Grasses project is evaluating new temperate perennial grass cultivars for medium to low rainfall areas of the inland slopes of the Great Dividing Range in Victoria and New South Wales. There are few cultivars of perennial grasses available for these areas, so the project offers new options for livestock in the region. The CRC’s project builds on work done by CRC Salinity and CSIRO to create new cultivars of cocksfoot, tall fescue and phalaris tolerant of low rainfall, prolonged summer drought, and soils with high acidity and high aluminium levels.

The new cultivars will be water efficient, making them suitable complements to lucerne in phase farming systems in relevant regions and more reliable in drier climates. In addition, this project will develop management practices for these new cultivars, to be delivered as extension packages.

The performance of the new lines was examined across different target environments, e.g. cocksfoot and phalaris for lower rainfall Victoria and southern NSW and summer active tall fescue for northern NSW farming systems. The new lines show increased persistence and productivity, with better feed quality.

Future Farm Industries CRC expects to complete negotiations with seed companies and the new elite lines of the perennial grasses to commercial partners in 2014.


Improved Perennial Grasses Project Leader: Dr Zhongnan Nie

Further Information


Future Farm Industries Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) ceased trading on 30 June 2014.

This website contains information about the CRC’s research into perennial plant based farming systems.

This site will remain live until 30 June 2017 but is no longer being updated or reviewed.

Further information about CRC research projects can be obtained by following links from relevant project pages or by viewing the research transfer page.

The CRC was funded for seven years (2007-2014) under the Australian Government Cooperative Research Centre program.