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Pastures containing improved forages and native rangeland comprise 23 million acres of Oklahoma land.  Forage and hay production (alfalfa + grass) was worth more than $600 million in 2007!  These resources are extremely important in feeding the 5,000,000 + cattle and other livestock that are raised in Oklahoma each year, as well as providing important food and habitat for wildlife.


IPM programs for improved forages and native rangeland are designed to keep Oklahoma's forage resources productive today and for generations to come. OSU continues to work to develop and deliver effective IPM programs for forage production systems in Oklahoma.


Alfalfa and Legume Forage

Alfalfa and other legume forages are important components of the livestock production systems of Oklahoma. Of the broadleaf forages, alfalfa is the most important legume grown, followed by a mix of forages that includes arrowleaf clover, red clover and white clover. Annual and Sericea lespedeza are also grown in Oklahoma. Many pests challenge the efficient production of this important crop and require effective IPM programs to produce them. There is increasing interest in producing forage for organic livestock production; fortunately IPM provides a framework for managing pests that can meet the needs of organic forage production as well as more traditional production systems.


Improved Grass and Rangeland

Improved pasture grass forages include warm-season perennial grasses such as Bermudagrass, Old World bluestem, Weeping lovegrass and Bahiagrass. Cool-season grasses include Tall fescue and Ryegrass. The maintenance of the health of  pastures is critical for sustainable production of these important sources of livestock feed.


Oklahoma is also home to 23 million acres of native rangeland. Rangelands are defined by their vegetation. Some types of rangelands that occur in Oklahoma include Crosstimbers, Shortgrass Prairie, Shinnery Oak Grassland, Tallgrass Prairie and Mesquite Grasslands.


Fortunately IPM provides a framework for managing pests that can meet the needs for maintaining healthy rangeland and pastures.

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