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YIELD AND DIGESTIBILITY OF FORAGES IN EAST INDONESIA I. LEGUMES

  • Bulo, D. (Balai Penelitian Ternak) ;
  • Blair, G.J. (Department of Agronomy and Soil Science University of New England) ;
  • Stur, W. (Department of Agriculture, University of Queensland) ;
  • Till, A.R. (Department of Agronomy and Soil Science University of New England)
  • Received : 1993.10.20
  • Accepted : 1994.03.17
  • Published : 1994.09.01

Abstract

This study was undertaken at Gowa, South Sulawesi, Indonesia as part of a larger forage genetic resource evaluation project. The experimental program consisted of a field experiment where grasses and legume species were grown in monocultures and the yield, N content and rumen bag digestibility using goats were measured. The field experiment was conducted from December 1985 to October 1986. Eight species of legumes (Desmodium heterophyllum cv. John-stone, Desmodium triflorum from Gowa, South Sulawesi, Arachis sp. from Maiwa, South Sulawesi, Clitoria ternalea CPI 50973, Macroptilium atropurpureum ev. Siratro, Neonotonia wightii cv. Tinaroo, Centrosema pubescens CPI 58575, Centrosema plumeri CPI 58568) were grown as monocultures. After establishment all plants were cut to a uniform height of 5 cm, and subsequent cuts were made on regrowth after 14, 28, 42, and 56 days (cycle 1). Cycle 2 commenced towards the end of the wet season and continued for 157 days into the dry season. The highest yielding legumes were C. ternatea in the wet season and Arachis sp. in the dry season. The mean rumen bag dry matter digestibility (RBDMD) of legumes of 67.6% for leaf material (averaged over all cycles and ages) was 7.6% higher than for stem material. The RBDMD of Arachis was significantly higher than all other species. The RBDMD of all legumes declined with age. Calculation of yield of digestible DM (yield $\times$ RBDMD) showed that Arachis sp. was the best legume. The combination of plant "quality" with yield measures is a valuable adjunct to routine agronomic survey procedures in plant evaluation programs. Arachis sp. appears to offer considerable promise and should be more widely evaluated.

Keywords

Legumes;DM Yield;Rumen Bag Digestibility