In order to understand the relationship between lactic acid bacteria (LAB) species and silage fermentation, a total of 65 LAB strains isolated from mixed pasture of timothy (Phleum pratense L.) and orchardgrass (Dactylis glomerata L.), and its badly preserved silages were subjected to phenotypic and genetic analysis. According to these analyses, the isolates were divided into 13 groups, including Enterococcus gallinarum, Lactobacillus acidipiscis, L. coryniformis subsp. coryniformis, L. coryniformis subsp. torquens, L. curvatus, L. paraplantarum, L. plantarum subsp. argentoratensis, L. plantarum subsp. plantarum, L. sakei subsp. carnosus, Lactococcus garvieae, Lactococcus lactis subsp. cremoris, Leuconostoc pseudomesenteroides, Pediococcus acidilactici, Pediococcus pentosaceus, Weissella hellenica, Weissella paramesenteroides and Carnobacterium divergens. This is the first report to document that C. divergens, L. acidipiscis, L. sakei subsp. carnosus, L. garvieae, phenotypically novel L. lactis subsp. cremoris, E. gallinarum and W. hellenica are present in vegetative forage crops. L. plantarum group strains were most frequently isolated from the badly preserved silages. Some isolates showed a wide range of growth preferences for carbohydrate utilization, optimal growth pH and temperature in vitro, indicating that they have a high growth potential. These results are useful in understanding the diversity of LAB associated with decayed silage of timothy and orchardgrass.