Common Forages

Grasses

Brachiaria Humidicola

Pennisetum purpureum (hybrid Napier N69)


The Pennisetum genus contains annuals and perennials, tufted or creeping varieties with branched stems. Pennisetum purpureum is an important pasture species; and hybrid Napier N69 is similar to Napier grass, but has a higher leaf-to-stem ratio than Napier. Annual dry matter yield of 16.6 tons/ha at 6 weekly cutting interval and 130 kg/ha/an of Nitrogen was recorded for hybrid Napier N69.

Panicum maximum (Guinea Grass)


This 2m tall grass of the Poaceae family is native to Africa. Its adaptability to tropical climate, drought-like conditions and a variety of soil types makes it suitable fodder for farm animals locally. Guinea grass leaves are fine, soft and contain good levels of protein (13-21%). The root system of Guinea grass allows it to survive fires. Additionally, it is shade-tolerant and can be intercropped with taller plants. It seeds profusely ensuring a constantly regenerating fodder supply.

Pennisetum purpureum (Mott Dwarf Elephant Grass)


While being a short grass as the name suggests, Mott Dwarf Elephant Grass can grow to an uncut height of 1 metre. Although the yield is usually less than Napier grass, the Mott dwarf has a higher leaf-to-stem ratio. Its most outstanding characteristic is its high forage quality.

Legumes

Leuceaena leucocephala (Wild Tamarind)


Leuceaena leucocephala is a deep-rooted perennial shrub native to Central and South America. The plant is suited to well-drained neutral to alkaline soils, and is also drought resistant. Ruminants may graze on wild tamarind, or it may be harvested for feeding.It is propagated by seeds or cutting.

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Gliridia sepium (Quickstick)


Gliridia sepium is a fast-growing tree that reaches up to 20 metres in height. Useful as live fence post, Quickstick is a good source of protein and can be propagated by seeds or cutting. The species is also known to improve animal production (both milk and meat) in large and small ruminants.

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