Natural US prairie looks like being a more potent biofuel source than switchgrass, according to researchers in the Midwest, quoted on Treehugger.com. The researchers are based at the Tallgrass Prairie Center, the Treehugger reports says:
in addition to producing more than twice the biomass than single-species planting (not less than 238% more than switchgrass), multiple-species plantations restored biodiversity, grew on degraded land and — perhaps most importantly — could be carbon negative.
This has to be a good way to go, if the energy balances stack up. It would be great if it is possible to mow down the prairie, leaving the roots and other biomass to protect the soil. It would also get away from the need for fertilizers (the US is structurally short in fertilisers and imports come from the Caribbean and Canada) . We might even see herds of Buffalo sweeping majestically across the plains. Give me land lots of land under starry skies above.