Seeding the green future
Agriculture and landscapes are highly exposed to climate changes, as farming activities and green areas directly depend on climatic conditions. For more than 30 years, DLF breeding and product development has optimized grass varieties ideal to local climatic and environmental conditions.
By increasing resilience to changing factors such as disease pressure, severe drought and flooding situations, DLF has managed to meet the requirements for future production. Through dedicated plant breeding, our breeders are delivering solutions for more sustainable land use across the world’s temperate climate zones.
Constant improvements to top-quality varieties of grass, clover and alfalfa help our customers increase their outputs and playing hours, reduce their inputs, and simplify the management of their green spaces. These are sustainable solutions.
See our "Frequently asked questions" below for a quick guide to the ways that DLF research and development contribute to a green future.
Why is grass a sustainable crop?
Perennial grass and grassland legumes are productive, multipurpose and adapted to various conditions.
- Grass absorbs more CO2 than any other agricultural crop due to a longer growing season that lasts from early spring to late autumn, and all year round in climate zones with mild winters.
- Effective absorption of solar energy through the long growing season allows for more CO2 sequestration than other crops, such as cereals and maize that are harvested during late summer and leave the ground uncovered.
- Roots store carbon, reduce the N2O emission and prevent nitrogen leaching to the ground water.
- Grass pastures accumulate organic matter and soil nitrogen, and improve soil structure.
- Grass-clover pastures can fix 300-500 kg N per ha from the air using rhizobium microbes meaning less need for mineral fertilizer. The aftermath effect on the following crop is >100 kg N per ha.
How much CO2 does grass absorb?
- Ground research shows carbon sequestration of up to 1 t C/ha in 0-25 cm and 0,6 t C/ha in 25-50 cm soil depth under perennial grass (corresponds to 3,6 t CO2/ha). Carbon is also stored in the crown and above ground plant parts.
How can grass and legumes reduce the climate gas emission?
- The CO2 emission is reduced, when soil from perennial crops is undisturbed.
- High quality forage mixtures are mores disease resistant, secure a more efficient land use and the highest forage production pr. ha.
- Grass varieties with 1% increased fiber digestibility increase milk production with 0.25 l/day pr. cow. More milk and meat is produced by fewer cows and less emission from the digestion process.
What are the environmental benefits from grass?
- Pastures for grazing or silage production have little need for herbicides, fungicides and insecticides. Due to their fast growth rate, grasses usually out-compete weeds, and because grass consists of similar, but not identical genetics, they are less prone to fungal attack.
- Against insects, grass can have its own natural weapon; a fungus, called an ‘endophyte’. The endophyte lives in symbiosis with the grass and produce insect repellent compounds.
- Clover-grass pastures can symbiotically fix 300-500 kg N per ha from atmospheric nitrogen. This means less need for fertilisers. Agricultural inputs, nitrogen in particular, consume energy to produce and thereby C02. 1% of global CO2 emissions are from the agrochemical synthesis of nitrogen (Hauber-Bosch process) used as fertiliser.
- Grassland can help to reduce erosion and delay or avoid flooding.
What are the benefits with regards to biodiversity?
- Pastures with clovers, alfalfa and herbs like plantain, provide flowers and feed for honey bees, bumble bees, butterflies and other insects.
- These areas have a minimal requirement for pesticides and therefore also a minimal impact on insect communities.
- Undisturbed grassland improves soil fertility, more earthworms, improved nutrient availability, drainage and soil structure.
What are the environmental benefits of bio-refined protein from grass, clover and alfalfa?
- Bio-refined protein from grass, clover and alfalfa can be locally produced, which enhances the self-sufficiency of protein and reduces CO2 emissions from transport.
- Bio-refined protein can improve business opportunities in rural areas and couple animal- and plant productions at territory level.
- Home-grown protein reduces the dependency of mineral N fertilisers.
- Reinforce protein autonomy in animal productions by exploitation of grassland.
How can 4turf® grasses reduce inputs
By using 4turf® varieties you minimize inputs and maximize your turfgrass performance. 4turf® brings excellent disease resistance, winter hardiness and drought tolerance. This means less need for chemical treatments and less irrigation.
Fast germination, even at low temperatures of around 4 degrees, means there will be less need for herbicide applications. 4turf® will establish before the weeds and will outcompete them, even many of the most resilient ones.
4turf® also has outstanding drought tolerance due to a deep root system, so even in dry conditions you will a green close–knit lawn.
How can microlegumes reduce greenhouse gas emissions?
Nitrogen is the fuel for turfgrass growth. Because of their symbiotic relationship with soil bacteria microlegumes have the ability to fixate free nitrogen from the air into the soil. Providing nitrogen in this organic and natural way is more sustainable and reduces the need for synthesized nitrogen. The industrial production of synthesized nitrogen fertilizers is very energy-intensive and emits CO2 into the atmosphere.
What are the benefits regarding biodiversity?
Microlegumes (white clover and alfalfa) and their own specialized growth habit, root structure and interaction with the soil microbes etc will improve the biodiversity in the lawn.
Microlegumes provide your lawn with nectar filled flowers. The flowers attract pollinating insects, who are important to the whole ecosystem. Microclover has small white flowers and microalfalfa has purple colored flowers.
How can DLF Seed Treatments reduce fertiliser and water use?
By using DLF Seed Treatments you can minimize the use of fertilisers and reduce nitrogen leaching into the soil. ProNitro®/SeedBooster is a way of applying nitrogen fertiliser that is four times more efficient than traditional fertiliser applications. Each seed is coated with a small dose of nitrogen. This targeted feeding reduces nitrogen leaching by up to 50%.
The Hydroactive Water Management Technology in ProNitro® allows a reduction of up to 15 % of the water normally needed for successful germination and establishment.
How can Quick Action® grasses reduce inputs?
By using Quick Action® varieties you minimize inputs and maximize your turfgrass performance. Quick Action® has excellent disease resistance, winter hardiness and drought tolerance. This means less need for chemical treatments and less irrigation.
Fast germination, even at low temperatures at around 4 degrees, means there will be less need for herbicide applications. Quick Action ® will establish before the weeds and will outcompete them, even many of the most resilient ones.
Quick Action® also has outstanding drought tolerance due to a deep root system, so even in dry conditions you will have a green, close–knit lawn.