Happy Thanksgiving

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We here at Bamert Seed Company would like to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving! Enjoy this time with family and friends and take a moment to reflect on all that you have to be thankful for as individuals and as a nation. While enjoying your Thanksgiving festivities, take a moment to thank the farmers who provide a bountiful harvest every year. It is through their hard work and dedication which allows us to enjoy an abundance and vast variety of agricultural products!

 

Bamert Seed

by Gretchen Adams, M.S.

Blue Grama Grass for Soil Erosion Control and More

Soil erosion is a reality many people have to contend with. As the rains come down on sloping terrain, loose surface soil is taken down with the water. One way to address and control soil erosion is through the use of plants like Blue Grama grass.

What makes it a great choice for soil erosion control is that its dense, shallow root system holds down the soil it’s planted in, preventing soil from blowing away even during storms. Because the root structure is shallow, rainfall is quickly and easily absorbed.

Other characteristics of Blue Grama that makes it a great option for soil erosion is its tolerance to drought, heat, cold, temperature fluctuations, and soil variation. It also mixes well with Buffalograss. Maintenance is minimal and it is moderately durable. Blue Grama grass needs well drained soils to flourish and is unsuited to wet, poorly drained terrains. This makes it an ideal soil erosion control option for open plains, foothills, woodlands, and other dry arid climates.

Besides acting as an effective way to control soil erosion, Blue Grama grass is also an important forage species for all species of livestock and wildlife because of its high nutritional value. After curing, it still retains up to 50% of its nutritive value. It grows between 10–20 inches and has a fast maturation time of as short as 60–70 days.

These characteristics make Blue Grama a good grazing option for all sorts of livestock and wildlife. Growth usually does not occur until the onset of summer warmth and accompanying moisture. Under severe drought conditions, it goes dormant and will resume its growth cycle when conditions are favorable once again. It is suited for fall and winter grazing, maintaining a high nutritional value upon curing.

It is also an excellent choice for turf grass in low maintenance, un-mowed lawns. Proper management is needed to achieve good turf quality, but excessive irrigation and fertilization can lead to weed and cool season grass invasion.

If you are looking for a specific, native seed for your project, Bamert Seed has the seeds you are looking for. You can check out our plant library to see the seeds we have available, as well as technical data such as the mature height, seeds per pound, tolerance to different types of soils and climates, as well as values for wildlife and foraging. We offer over 200 species of high quality grasses, forbs, and legumes.
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Manage Your Sideoats Grama for Livestock and Wildlife Foraging

A perennial mid-height grass found in a variety of habitats such as meadows, rocky slopes, and mountainous plateaus, Sideoats Grama (Bouteloua curtipendula) derives its name from the way its seeds grow on the sides of the stalk which makes it look like oats. This grass type has become a popular choice among growers because of its thin, long leaves that makes for excellent foraging for livestock and wildlife alike.

Sideoats Grama grass can tolerate drought and dry soils. It is a deep-rooted perennial, that produces high quality forage which makes it ideal for foraging. The grass type features zigzag stalks with evenly spaced spikes, and is commonly used as animal fodder material due to its medium protein content which is highly palatable for grazing animals. It is considered as nutritious forage for all classes of livestock, from elk and deer to birds and even wild turkey.

The tiny flowers of Sideoats Grama typically come in either orange or purple, but may also come in hues of orange or red. This prairie grass is able to withstand the full heat of the sun with little water and can even be grown as turf grass. This grass type is best cultivated in grass mixes for range and pasture seeding along with Blue Grama or Buffalograss to provide optimal erosion control. It is also recommended for earth fills and recreational plantings because it may be planted in dry to average soils that drain well. Additionally, it may be used for ornamental purposes because of its blue-green foliage.

Since Sideoats Grama grass can thrive in many kinds of soil and different climates, managing this grass type is easy as long as you know what season to use it in. While it is a tri-seasonal grass, it still grows best during the summer and fall, but its grass stays palatable for animals even in winter. This makes it a flexible range grass species. It is also well adapted to calcareous and moderately alkaline soils. Under favorable conditions, it can quickly restore eroded grasslands.

Bamert Seed offers high quality Sideoats Grama seeds you can use to plant forage for all classes of grazing livestock as well as wildlife. For any inquiries about this native grass seed and our other available options, feel free to contact us. We produce over 90% of our seeds right here on our farms, so you can be assured that our seeds are of the highest quality.

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Just Passsing Through

Sometimes while driving down the road we pass a vehicle that just stands out and grabs our attention. Or maybe you’re involved in stock showing and it’s not only the truck that stands out, but the trailer they are towing behind them. Be on the look out for our new truck and trailer on the road, as we go delivering seed or head off to a show. So if you happen to see us just passing through your town, state, or county; give us a shout out.

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Bamert Seed

by Gretchen Adams, M.S.

High Quality and Environmentally Sustainable Native Grass Seed

Using high quality and environmentally sustainable native grass seed improves the physical, biological and chemical composition of the soil. This is important as we are faced with needing to revitalize our soil to continue producing for a growing population, with a decreasing agricultural land availalblity.

The nutrients found in soil are vital for creating a sustainable system of farming. From planting to production to harvest, each phase is critical and no more important than the other. Each stage must be carried out properly and must be treated as a supportive contingency plan in moving on to the next stage of the cycle. When it comes to planting, using Bamert grass seed and native plants can reduce the environmental impact you produce as these high quality seeds are viable and have high yielding potential.

Other characteristics of our native grass seed that make them distinct and superior from the rest are their color, the fullness or plumpness of each seed, and how whole each seed is. None of them are broken or damaged and we ensure every seed variety’s quality is industry standard. The 90% of the grass seeds we provide are produced in our own farms so you can be assured of quality products.

Seed cleanliness, free from weeds and other inert materials such as stones also make them high quality. Seed purity, meaning that seeds are genetically pure and free from admixtures, while containing the right amount of moisture, is also a characteristic that can help lessen the need for replanting, as well as ensure more uniformity, and early growth of the seeds and increased resistance to insects and plant-diseases.

To obtain high quality native grass seed, call us at Bamert Seed Company, where our offerings of over 200 species of native grass, forbs and legumes have been selected from the regional USDA Plant Material Centers for their soil and climate adaptation characteristics. We offer Blue Grama, Buffalograss, Big Bluestem, and many more. Our trained staff will be happy to accommodate you and answer your inquiries regarding our services and products.

You can also visit our Plant Library to find out more about our different blends, grass species, forbs species, and woody species.

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Blue Grama Grass as an Ornamental Plant in Your Desert Landscape

Finding the right plants for your desert landscaping needs can be tedious. Some people would think that living in places with arid climate gives limited selection of plants, and that most are colorless and dull. Blue Grama grass can be the perfect plant for your lawn, whether it is for a sprawl of land on your backyard or simply an ornamental plant amidst your desert landscape design. This type of grass, given its shallow stems and attractive seed heads, will definitely give your garden a beautiful twist.

Mostly known as one of the best forage grass types, Blue Grama grass (Bouteloua gracilis) is a plant that thrives in areas that are dry and prone to droughts. Using Blue Grama grass allows your desert landscape design to be reminiscent of open plains that will give your garden a wider and bigger look with a softer texture given that there will only be a few plants in it. Blue Grama grass is versatile and can survive even in sand or clay foundations. It does not require excessive irrigation and fertilization, thus promoting water conservation and fewer expenses on fertilizer and water bills.

In desert landscaping, succulents are the most famous kind of plant when it comes to ornamental use as it gives a bit of color and geometrical beauty to the garden. But for those looking for a more minimalistic desert landscape design, including the Blue Grama grass seed into your growing desert landscape provides just that. It also allows for a very low-maintenance garden that can firmly hold on to soil, stopping it from being blown away by winds. Blue Grama is best planted together with Buffalograss or wildflowers.

Keep in mind that different plants have different care and maintenance requirements. Given that Blue Grama is a low maintenance grass type, all you need to do is keep it at around 1.5 to 3 inches high for your lawn. If left unmowed, your Blue Grama can grow to around 10 to 15 inches. Besides this, you only need to look out for weed invasion, especially if you over-irrigate or over-fertilize your stand. In such cases, preemergent herbicides made for Buffalograss will work to clean your turf. Avoid phenoxy-based herbicides as these can harm Blue Grama.

To use Blue Grama grass as an ornamental plant, it can be placed and scattered around your desert landscape to give soft accents here and there to contrast the sharp and geometrical edges of the domineering succulents around your garden.

Looking for Blue Grama grass seed for sale? Get in touch with us today and allow us to help you learn more about growing Blue Grama.

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Wales Manor Vineyard-Buffalograss

Imagine yourself at the top of a knoll of green grass overlooking the most breath taking view you have ever seen. To one side you have the pavilion where the lucky couple will be married and to the other the full lush vines permeating the air with their delicious aroma. The warm sun at your back illuminating the lush green glow of the Buffalograss at your feet; the aromatic smell of the vines enhanced by the suns warmth; every little detail a tantalizing tickle to your senses. It’s the perfect setting for that perfect day. It’s the majestic feeling that one would get at Wales Manor Vineyard.

Bamert Seed Company has had the privilege to work with the esteemed vineyard in their revegetation projects of lawns and between vine rows. Topgun Buffalograss was specifically chosen for this project because of its lush green apperance, drought tolerance, and low maintenance requirements. Topgun Buffalograss provided Wales Manor an aesthetic appeal and turf grass for their needs; whether it be an outdoor wine tasting, a wedding, or a concert. Since Topgun Buffalograss is one of the shortest growing Buffalograss, they were able to use it between the vine rows as it would not interfere with growth; but rather provide ground cover to help reduce soil erosion.

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Bamert Seed

by Gretchen Adams, M.S.

Research & Development

Research and development are an integral part of  a company’s growth. It is also something that we here at Bamert Seed Company work hard to improve every day. We are constantly thinking of new products that our customer base may need and the potential of those species to grow on our farms. We hand select specific species based on customer needs as well as evaluate current species. We evaluate the areas of growth habits, maintenance, and nutritional requirements. Like all research projects we evaluate these areas so that we cannot only apply it to a large scale of production but to be better able serve our customers and answer any questions they may have. We are a company that accepts change and we want to be better able to provide and keep up with those changes. It is our goal to supply high quality seed to our customers and help them with all of their needs. As Peter Morville pointed out “What we find changes who we become.”

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Bamert Seed

by Gretchen Adams, M.S.

PROFESSIONAL’S GUIDE TO SEEDING AND ESTABLISHING NATIVE SPECIES

Native species are often the most trying species to establish. However, when done correctly establishment can be very successful and timely. The instructions below will offer you the best results possible for seeding and establishing native plant species. It is important to note that ground disturbance WILLpromote weed growth. Therefore it is imperative that proper precautions and treatments be understood and implemented to prevent and control weeds. Without a plan to address weed pressure, the likelihood of a successful native plant stand is minimal.

A THREE STEP PLANTING APPROACH

  • 1st Planting – COVER CROP: Planting a cover crop such as: wheat, rye, oats, sorghum or a blend of multiple species allows for a window of opportunity to eliminate future weed pressure. This is done so by allowing the bank of weed seeds in the soil to germinate and then apply appropriate herbicide(s) to terminate the weeds. The timing of the cover crop planting is based on the cover crop species being planted. Therefore, use species suitable to your desired planting window. It is recommended that all existing vegetation prior to the planting the cover crop. The goal of the cover crop is to provide standing residue to plant the native grasses into. Terminating the cover crop is recommended in non-droughty conditions. Terminate the cover crop with glyphosate when the cover crop is beginning to set seed. Alternatively, if planting a cover crop isn’t an option fallowing the area for one growing season prior to planting the native species is an option. Disking the area during the fallow period is recommended as long as the risk of erosion is not increased in doing so. The goal during the fallow period is to attempt to germinate as many weed seeds as possible then chemically terminating the weeds. By doing so, you reduce the weed seed bank present in the soil bed. This method allows for a “sterile” seed bed to be created and therefore reduce weedy competition. Once the “sterile” seed bed is created the native species may be planted.
  • 2nd Planting – GRASS: Upon terminating the cover crop, the grass species may be planted into the standing cover crop residue. Note: glyphosate may be sprayed to terminate any weeds present at this point. Grass species may be planted on irrigated sites when the soil temperature reaches 60°F. Dryland areas can be seeded from December through August. Successful dryland stands are possible with 2 or 3 timely rains. Thus, we suggest planting prior to your area’s most consistent rainfall period with suitable tempatures for seed germination. Planting the forbs/legumes at a later date allows for broadleaf weeds to be chemically controlled in the establishing grass. Reference the Post-Grass Planting Weed Control section below for weed control recommendations.
  • 3rd Planting – FORBS/LEGUMES: After the grass is successfully established and the weed pressure is controlled, the forbs/legumes may be planted. To offer the newly planted forbs/legumes the least amount of competition the newly seeded area needs to be shredded to a height of 4-6 inches. In most cases, the seeding rate of the forbs/legumes alone will be very light. Therefore, in order to aid in regulating the flow of the forbs/legumes a no-germ filler may be used to increase the overall seeding rate. Alternatively, the forb/legume rate may be increased to obtain a manageable seeding rate and the seed sown in strips throughout the grass stand. Reference the Post-Forb/Legume Planting Weed control section below for weed control recommendations.

HOW TO SEED NATIVE PLANT SPECIES

DRILL SEEDING

  • Drill seeding into a cover crop is highly recommended. However, there are instance where a cover crop is not an option. When drill seeding in an area with no cover crop chemically terminate existing vegetation prior to planting the native species.
  • Allow time for weed to wither.
  • A drill capable of planting fescue or wheat can be used to plant Buffalograss, Switchgrass, and other slick-seed native species. Depth bands on the opening disks are required in order to maintain the required 1/4 to 1/2 inch seeding depth.
  • A native grass drill will be required for chaffy species such as: Big bluestem, Little bluestem, Blue grama, etc. Depth bands on the opening disks are required in order to maintain the required 1/4 to 1/2 inch seeding depth.
  • When planting all native all native plant species it is very important to place the seed under the soil surface to ensure adequate moisture and seed-to-soil contact for seedling germination.
  • Irrigate after planting if possible.

BROADCAST SEEDING

  • Broadcast seeding into a cover crop is highly recommended. However, there are instances where a cover crop is not feasible. When broadcast seeding in an area with no cover crop disk or till the soil 4 inches deep to loosen soil and to terminate existing weeds.
  • Spread seed with a fertilizer spreader, commercial air fertilizer truck, or by hand.
  • Disk, harrow, or aerate 1 to 2 inches deep at an appropriate speed to cover the seed with soil  1/4 to 1/2 inch deep.
  • Pack the soil with a cultipacker or roller to ensure the seed is in good contact with the soil. Seed-to-soil contact is essential for germination and successful stand establishment.
  • Irrigate after planting if possible.

NOTE: Hydromulching may be used on sloped sites.

Visit our online How to Guide page for demonstration videos: How to Guide

HOW TO CONTROL WEEDS IN NATIVE PLANT STANDS

  • Pre-Planting Weed Control: Glyphosate is a broad-spectrum herbicide; therefore it will terminate the actively growing plants. Glyphosate can be used to control existing weeds before planting the grass and may eliminate the need for disking or tilling prior to planting. Glyphosate can also be used to terminate the cover crop.
  • Post-Grass Planting Weed Control: After the grass species have reached 4″ tall or 6 leaves (not including forbs/legumes) it presents an excellent window of broadleaf weed control. Chemicals such as: 2,4-D, Dicamba, or Banvel have the ability to control unwanted broadleaf weed species while your grass is establishing. Once the grass stand is established a pre-emergent herbicide such as trifuralin may be applied to prevent future broadleaf weed pressure. Follow label recommendations for chemical applications rates and methods.
  • Post-Forb/Legume Weed Control: After the forbs and/or legumes have been seeded there is no ability to chemically control weeds at this point without damaging the forbs and/or legumes. Your weed control abilities now shift to mechanical methods of weed control. For example: shredding, mowing, hoeing, and/or individual plant removal are the required methods for controlling weeds. Once the plants are established a pre-emergent herbicide such as trifuralin may be applied to prevent future broadleaf weed pressure. Follow label recommendations for chemical applications rates and methods.

HOW TO IRRIGATE NATIVE PLANT STANDS

After planting, begin irrigation by filling the soil profile to field capacity and depending on weather conditions, water once or twice a day to maintain adequate moisture for a three week period. After the seedlings have germinated and an acceptable seedling density has been achieved, water once or twice a week until the stand is fully established. At 65°F, most native species will germinate in 10-14 days.

HOW TO FERTILIZE NATIVE PLANT STANDS

Due to a potential increase in weed pressure we do notrecommend applying fertilizer at seeding. If a soil test has been conducted, apply post-establishment fertilizer at the recommended rate. If tests have not been conducted apply 2 pounds of nitrogen and 1 pound of phosphate per 1,000 square feet at six to eight weeks of age.

 

PROFESSIONAL’S GUIDE TO SEEDING AND ESTABLISHING NATIVE SPECIES

 

Rhett Kerby

by Rhett Kerby, M.S.