To provide access to research-based information on the topic of grassland fertilization, SDSU Extension staff recently released a six-part series on iGrow.org.

"Grassland fertilization is a topic of much interest and debate among grassland managers of all walks. From livestock managers to hay producers, ecologists and fertilizer salesmen opinions on grassland fertilization are not in short supply. What is difficult to find is information on fertilization effects in relation to ecology, economics and long-term sustainability of grassland systems," explained Pete Bauman, SDSU Extension Range Field Specialist.

Bauman is one of three SDSU Extension staff who compiled the research into a series that is easy to understand and applicable to South Dakota grasslands. The other two authors are Karla Hernandez, SDSU Extension Forages Field Specialist and Sandy Smart, SDSU Extension Rangeland Management Specialist & SDSU Professor.

Overall, the series is designed to help producers and managers understand the pros and cons of grassland fertilization in relation to native and non-native grasses in planted fields (such as Conservation Reserve Program), tame or go-back pastures, grass hayfields and native grasslands/pastures.

"Scientific literature has much to offer on this topic, and we hope this series provides clarity to South Dakota's grassland managers," Bauman said.

Each article focuses on a different aspect of grassland fertilization including:

Article 1: Terminology and Economics

Article 2: Ecology

Articles 3 & 4: Case Studies of Native Pastures

Article 5: Native Grass Plantings

Article 6: Exotic Grass Plantings

To read the series, visit iGrow.org.