African Journal of
Agricultural Research

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Agric. Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1991-637X
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJAR
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 6712

Evaluation of ‘Tifton 85’ during hay production using different nitrogen fertilization rates and dehydration methods

Loreno Egidio Taffarel
  • Loreno Egidio Taffarel
  • Centro de Ciências Agrárias, Universidade Estadual do Oeste do Paraná, Marechal Cândido Rondon, PR, Brazil.
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Eduardo Eustáquio Mesquita
  • Eduardo Eustáquio Mesquita
  • Centro de Ciências Agrárias, Universidade Estadual do Oeste do Paraná, Marechal Cândido Rondon, PR, Brazil.
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Deise Dalazen Castagnara
  • Deise Dalazen Castagnara
  • Departamento de Medicina Veterinária, Universidade Federal do Pampa, Uruguaiana, RS, Brasil.
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Patricia Barcellos Costa
  • Patricia Barcellos Costa
  • Centro de Ciências Agrárias, Universidade Estadual do Oeste do Paraná, Marechal Cândido Rondon, PR, Brazil.
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Paulo Sérgio Rabello de Oliveira
  • Paulo Sérgio Rabello de Oliveira
  • Departamento de Medicina Veterinária, Universidade Federal do Pampa, Uruguaiana, RS, Brasil.
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  •  Received: 19 April 2017
  •  Accepted: 13 September 2017
  •  Published: 05 October 2017

Abstract

The objective of this study was to evaluate Cynodon species ‘Tifton 85’ at different hay production phases (harvest, baling, and storage) and different (N) rates. Dehydration of the first crop was carried out in the field, while the second crop was in the shed. Dry matter and protein content increased linearly with the N rates. Dehydration in the shed was not effective for hay production, since dry matter did not reach the desired level of 850 g kg-1. During the hay production period (harvest, baling, and storage), the content of acid detergent fiber of the first crop and the second crop increased by 25.32 and 7.38%, respectively, and that of lignin increased by 21.33 and 32.27%, respectively. Forage digestibility decreased by 4.55%, when dehydration occurred in the field, whereas it decreased by 14.68% when dehydration occurred in the shed, a difference higher than 300% due to the loss of soluble carbohydrates. Overall, the findings of this study indicate that forage dehydration for hay production needs to be carried out in the field under appropriate environmental conditions to prevent nutritional losses. Additionally, dry matter of Tifton 85 increased by 20.40% and protein content increased by 18.65%, which equals 514.27 kg of soybean meal at 100 kg ha-1 of N.

Key words: Fertilization rates, hay production, nutrient quality of forage, pasture.