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Agronomy Journal Abstract -

Crude Protein, IVOMD, and Yield of Stockpiled Limpograsses1


This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 72 No. 6, p. 1021-1024
    Received: Jan 30, 1980

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  1. K. H. Quesenberry and
  2. W. R. Ocumpaugh2



Most tropical grasses show a marked decline in digestibility with age, thus a system of field stockpiling is not suitable. The purpose of this research was to investigate the use of three limpograss (Hemarthria altissima [Poir] Stapf. et C. E. Hubb) cultivars as autumn-winter conserved forage. In 1976, plots of each cultivar were clipped and allowed to regrow from 1 July, 29 July, and 26 August. Six yield and quality harvests were taken at 6 week intervals beginning on 23 Sept. 1976. In 1977 all plots were clipped and allowed to regrow from 1 August with five harvest for yield and quality taken at 4-week intervals beginning on 26 Sept. 1977. The yield results from 1976 suggest that stockpiling should begin by 1 August to allow for adequate dry matter accumulation by first freeze. ‘Redalta’ had higher yields than either ‘Greenalta’ or ‘Bigalta’ in both years, but dry matter accumulation patterns were similar for all grasses. In vitro organic matter digestion (IVOMD) of Bigalta was higher than Redalta or Greenalta at all sampling dates in both years. Regression analysis indicated a higher intercept and lower rate of decline in IVOMD of Bigalta than either Redalta or Greenalta.

Log transformation of crude protein (CP) increased (P > 0.05) the fit over the linear model for all grasses. The decay in CP occurred rapidly in all grasses and by the time the grasses would be consumed as a stockpiled forage it had dropped below the level necessary to maintain zero N balance in the grazing animal. No meaningful differences in CP among grasses were observed. Our results suggest that Bigalta Limpograss has potential fot autumn-winter stockpiling, but Redalta and Greenalta are probably not acceptable.

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