Native Plant

A plant that is indigenous to or originating from an area, the opposite of introduced, e.g. Western wheatgrass is native to Alberta.


Introduced plants that are well adapted to a region and have become established in the local ecosystem over time. Examples of naturalized plants in Alberta include white clover and Kentucky bluegrass.

Neutral Detergent Fiber (NDF)

The indigestible and slowly digestible components (cellulose, hemicellulose, lignin and ash) in the cell walls of the plant are called neutral detergent fibers (NDF). This is a more complete measure of fiber in the forage than acid detergent fiber (ADF), and the NDF levels are always higher than ADF. NDF is a good indicator of the potential intake of forage; as NDF increases, intake decreases.

Nitrogen Fixation

The symbiotic relationship between rhizobia bacteria and a legume where the bacteria form a nodule on a root or root hair and convert atmospheric nitrogen available in the air between the soil particles into a nitrogen form that is usable by the plant.


The point from which growth occurs on a stem and a point from which leaves develop and are attached. On grass stems, a node appears as a swelling, which is solid on the inside.


In legumes, a small growth on a root where rhizobia bacteria fix atmospheric nitrogen and convert it to ammonia, which plants can use.