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Suitability Evaluation of Three Tropical Pasture Species (Mulato II, Gatton Panic, and Rhodes Grass) for Cultivation under a Subtropical Climate of Australia

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Jayasinghe, P., Donaghy, D. J., Barber, D. G., Pembleton, K. G. and Ramilan, T. (2022) Suitability Evaluation of Three Tropical Pasture Species (Mulato II, Gatton Panic, and Rhodes Grass) for Cultivation under a Subtropical Climate of Australia. Agronomy, 12 (9). p. 2032. ISSN 2073-4395

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Article Link(s): https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy12092032

Publisher URL: https://www.mdpi.com/2073-4395/12/9/2032

Abstract

Exploring improved tropical forages is considered to be an important approach in delivering quality and consistent feed options for dairy cattle in tropical and subtropical regions. The present study aimed to study the suitability of three improved tropical grasses, Chloris gayana ‘Rhodes grass cv. Reclaimer’ (RR), Megathyrsus maximus ‘Gatton Panic’ (GP), and Brachiaria ruziziensis x B. decumbens x B. brizantha ‘Brachiaria Mulato II’ (BM) evaluating their carbon assimilation, canopy structure, herbage plant–part accumulation and quality parameters under irrigated conditions. An experiment was conducted at Gatton Research Dairy (27°54′ S, 152°33′ E, 89 m asl) Queensland, Australia, which has a predominantly subtropical climate. Photosynthesis biochemistry, canopy structure, herbage accumulation, plant part composition, and nutritive value were evaluated. Photosynthesis biochemistry differed between pasture species. Efficiency of CO2 assimilation was highest for GP and quantum efficiency was highest for BM. Pasture canopy structure was significantly affected by an interaction between pasture species and harvest. Forage biomass accumulation was highest in GP, while BM produced more leaf and less stem compared to both GP and RR. A greater leafy stratum and lower stemmy stratum depth were observed in the vertical sward structure of BM. Brachiaria Mulato II showed greater carbon partitioning to leaves, leaf: stem ratio, canopy, and leaf bulk density. It also demonstrated greater nutritive value (Total digestible nutrients (TDN), acid detergent fibre (ADF), neutral detergent fibre (NDF), neutral detergent insoluble protein (NDICP), Starch, nonfibre carbohydrates (NFC), metabolisable energy (ME), mineral profile (Mg, P, K, Fe, Zn) and dietary cation–anion difference (DCAD) for leaf, stem, and the whole plant. Greater quantum efficiency, leaf accumulation, and nutritive value of BM observed in the present study suggest BM as an attractive forage option for dairying that warrants further research in pasture-based systems in tropical and subtropical climates.

Item Type:Article
Business groups:Animal Science
Keywords:Brachiaria Mulato II; canopy structure; carbon assimilation; Gatton panic; nutritive value; Rhodes grass reclaimer; tropical pastures
Subjects:Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Agriculture and the environment
Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Agricultural meteorology. Crops and climate
Animal culture > Cattle > Dairying
Animal culture > Rangelands. Range management. Grazing
Animal culture > Feeds and feeding. Animal nutrition
Agriculture > By region or country > Australia > Queensland
Deposited On:18 Oct 2022 06:15
Last Modified:18 Oct 2022 06:15

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