Friday, September 05, 2003

Cheat Repeats

From Nevada's The Record-Courier comes this article about the problems caused by cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) and what's being done about it. Cheatgrass is a dangerous weed because it fuels hot, fast fires that native vegetation can't recover from and that firefighters can barely control. An interesting bit of trivia in the article notes that a clump of the grass can be grazed 12 times in a season and still set seed, an impressive feat. Although cheatgrass is eaten by some grazing animals, it provides less nutrition than other plants, and if eaten late in the season, can puncture the throats of animals with its stiff, pointy seeds.

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