Forbs are long leaf plants and not at all similar to the grasses. They should not be compared with the grasses for any reasons. Apart from the grass types, there are variety of forbs species and to name a few of them, they are as below:
- Illinois Bundle flower
- Purple Prairie Clover
- Black-eyed Susan
- Engelmann Daisy
- Maximillian Sunflower
- Partridge Pea
- Mexican Hat
- Awnless Bush Sunflower
- Common Sunflower
- Butterfly Milkweed
Difference between the plant families and their use as forages
The major plant families include the following types:
- Brassicas, and
- Some trees
Most of them fall in the category of grass and some are commonly used as forage without a saying. Now what are these grasses? Grasses produce a seed and die down on their own at the end of the growing season. It can be both large as well as small and in the process develop grains which feed the entire population all over the world and thus hold a great significance of its own.
These grasses are the main source of food for the animals as they are of no use to the humans and thus discarded by them as a waste. It is only the grain which is valued by the humans and paid attention to. Rest all is left for the animals and fed to them as and when possible in whatever manner. Grasses have other uses too and thus used accordingly as they are widespread and very much prevalent in the farms.
Now when one talks about forage then legumes are considered to be the second most common plant family. They grow in a restricted area as compared to the grasses and thus require more care and attention. They must be attended properly in order to make them productive and useful and to increase their survival rate. They are mostly planted with the grasses to provide essential nutrients to the soil. They can be further categorized as clovers, medics and trefoils.
Different species of grass, forbs and legume seeds are used for different purposes. They must not be confused with each other and must be used as per the purpose only. In fact in the current scenario, they are available at affordable prices and are a part of the wild flowers which must be fed to the cattle and thus serve as their food. Grass, forbs and legume seeds fulfill their food needs. They should thus be chosen by the farmers accordingly depending upon the requirements and the season.
They are multi utility items and are quintessential and their use must not be discarded at any costs. They depend upon the growing season, conditions of the environment and demand. All these can change or keep on changing thus reducing or increasing its use accordingly.
Grass, forbs and legume seeds are the best when it comes to forage and species selection must be done accordingly.