A rod-point technique for estimating botanical composition of pastures
A simplified point method, the rod-point technique, for determining pasture botanical composition was assessed against 3 other popular methods. It was over 100 times faster than the traditional cut and hand-separate technique for the same level of precision. The presence of bias in the rod-point technique was assessed by comparing its estimates with those obtained by the hand-separation method. The pasture was classified into 8 botanical components, and the rod-point technique was significantly different from the hand-separated method in 3 instances, but in each case so were the Levy-point and the dry-weight-rank methods or the dry-weight-rank method alone. The rodpoint technique is most useful in large grazing trials, on-farm pasture monitoring, and pasture surveys. It provides a simple alternative for estimating pasture composition, using low inputs of materials, time, and labour.