Tall Fescue

Festuca arundinacea
Tall fescue is a very adaptable species and grows well in dry or wet conditions. It is also winter-hardy and persistent. Tall fescue grows early in the spring and has the potential for high dry-matter production with Nitrogen fertilization. Tall fescue is a good choice for wetlands.

Tall fescue can be unpalatable due to rough leaves and high lignin content. Barenbrug’s breeding activities have led to newer, much softer leafed, higher yielding varieties with significantly improved palatability and digestibility.

Many varieties contain a harmful fungus called endophyte. This fungus makes the plant less palatable and depresses animal performance and health. All Barenbrug forage varieties are endophyte free to ensure good animal health and performance.


STF-43 is an innovative blend of late-maturing, soft-leaved tall fescues. STF-43 produces impressive dry matter yields with exceptional levels of digestible fiber. STF-43 is the result of Barenbrug’s forage analyses program which measured NDF (neutral detergent fiber) and NDFd (NDF digestibility).
With the laboratory analyses, Barenbrug identified significant differences in amount of fiber (NDF) and its digestibility (NDFd) between improved varieties. STF-43 is formulated with varieties to provide exceptional levels of digestible fiber per pound of dry matter fed.
Fed to high-producing animals such as lactating dairy cows, STF-43 provides energy derived from digestible fiber as well as the valuable effects of fiber which together promote rumen health and productivity, and, in turn animal health and productivity. STF-43 is well-suited for hay and haylage/baleage production. It is an excellent selection for a mixed or interplanting with a legume. STF-43 is late-maturing and endophyte-free.


With quick establishment, soft leaves, high palatability and high DM-yields, Barolex is an exciting new tall fescue with great potential. It has a very dense sod with leaf quality almost the same as perennial ryegrass. The experiences with this variety are very impressive; it even impresses people who have been skeptical about using fescue on their farm. Barenbrug’s breeding activities have led to new, much softer leafed varieties with significantly improved palatability and digestibility.


Drover is an early maturity variety selected for better heat and cold tolerance under drought conditions. It is a very high dry matter producing variety. Drover has good seedling vigor and very rapid establishment. It has upright growth habit making it highly suitable for hay production. Drover is endophyte-free, but still persists well under grazing in harsh environments. Drover is suited for stockpiling and fall grazing.


Like Barolex, Bariane is a new release of fine-leafed tall fescues. It is later maturing than other varieties and in palatability studies it ranks number one. Bariane is listed in many European countries that test tall fescue for intensive grazing practices. It combines late maturity, feed quality and palatability.


BarElite is the latest release from the Barenbrug breeding program which is already well known for its soft leaf tall fescues. BarElite was selected in the US after multiple screening trials. It has a unique combination of high forage yield but still impressive digestibility values. BarElite is highly suited for producers who seek to produce and utilize high RFQ value forage. BarElite is a component of STF-43.

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