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Meadow foxtail

Meadow foxtail (Alopecurus pratensis) is a fodder crop related to perennial cereal grasses.

Meadow foxtail (Alopecurus pratensis)
Meadow foxtail (Alopecurus pratensis)
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©Stefan.lefnaer (CC BY-SA 4.0)

Economic importance

One of the best perennial grasses suitable for growing in periodically flooded areas.

After grazing quickly grows back. In the forest zone it can bleed 3-4 times during the summer.

When used for hay, it allows you to get two cuts with a total yield of 3-4 t/ha. Gives the greatest yields for 3-4 years of life.

Meadow foxtail is considered an excellent cereal component of grass mixtures in hay and pasture crop rotations. It is used in mixtures with other herbs to create long-term cultivated pastures.

Cultivation areas

It has become widespread in the Non-Chernozem zone and mountainous regions, partly in the forest-steppe zone in wet meadows.

Botanical description

Meadow foxtail (Alopecurus pratensis L.) is a perennial grass, high rhizome and locust types.

The stem is well leafy. Plant height 70-120 cm.

Inflorescence – ear (sultan). In appearance, it is similar to the meadow timothy inflorescence, but not cylindrical, but a sultan tapering upwards, and is also distinguished by a greater softness of the inflorescence.

Biological features

It gives a high yield on moist soils due to the good foliage of the stems. Well withstands flooding, so one of the best perennial grasses for grassing floodplains and drained marshes.

Winter hardiness is high, drought resistance is satisfactory.


In herbage can keep up to 10 years.

The type of development is winter-spring.


The tillage is the same as for other perennial grasses.

The seeding rate in grass mixtures is 6-10 kg/ha. Sowing depth 1-2 cm.


Fundamentals of agricultural production technology. Agriculture and crop production. Ed. V.S. Niklyaev. – M .: “Epic”, 2000. – 555 p.