Level of Confidence in vegetatively established grasses

1.     Farmer experiences
There are few documented farmer experiences with using vegetatively established grasses on saltland. However, there are advocates, such as the Barrett family from central Queensland who have reported:

By 1915 the land was cleared, and scalding started to appear by the mid-1930s. Landholders in the area recognised the problem and quickly planted varieties of salt-tolerant species such as marine couch and saltbush gathered from the Capricorn coast. This has saved a lot of our property, since these have spread across the salt-affected areas since then.”

2.     Research
Both historically and currently, there has been very little research carried out using these vegetatively established grasses on saltland so the level of confidence in this Saltland Solution is low compared to many of the others.

3.     Risks and challenges
There is exceptional genetic diversity in these grasses, so ‘planting material’ should be collected from suitable ‘types’ growing in similar salinity/waterlogging situations.

These vegetatively spreading grasses can be quite weedy and can invade wetlands and irrigation channels.

4.     Future prospects
The high cost associated with vegetatively established species means that these grasses have very limited prospects in strictly commercial grazing operations. For such highly saline and waterlogged areas, Saltland Solution 1 (Fence and exclude from grazing), or Saltland Solution 2 (Fence and volunteer pasture) may be more suitable alternatives.

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