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Endophyte is a naturally occurring fungus that lives inside grasses such as ryegrass, tall fescue and meadow fescue. The relationship between the plant and the fungus is called a ‘symbiotic relationship’ which entails the endophyte giving the plant protection against certain damaging insects, and in return the plant provides a ‘home’ for the endophyte to complete its lifecycle. An endophyte provides the plant with protection. This includes protection against insect pests and in some cases also protection from the grazing animal.
There are different endophyte options in both ryegrass and tall fescue including the AgResearch developed AR37, AR1 and MaxP (tall fescue) endophyte. Each endophyte has slightly different protective properties, with differing effects on insect pest protection.
At Agricom, we market the AgResearch novel endohytes AR1 and AR37 in most of our ryegrass cultivars, as well as providing low endophyte (LE) options. AgResearch novel endophytes are thoroughly developed and tested with world-renowned science, with emphasis placed on testing effects on animals, insects, pasture production and persistence.