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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Madison, Wisconsin » U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center » Environmentally Integrated Dairy Management Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #327521

Research Project: Improvement of Dairy Forage and Manure Management to Reduce Environmental Risk

Location: Environmentally Integrated Dairy Management Research

Title: Yield and nutritive value of photoperiod-sensitive sorghum and sorghum-sudangrass in central Wisconsin

Author
item Remick, Elizabeth - University Of Wisconsin
item Akins, Matthew - University Of Wisconsin
item Su, Huawei - University Of Wisconsin
item Coblentz, Wayne

Submitted to: Journal of Dairy Science
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/22/2016
Publication Date: 7/19/2016
Citation: Remick, E., Akins, M., Su, H., Coblentz, W.K. 2016. Yield and nutritive value of photoperiod-sensitive sorghum and sorghum-sudangrass in central Wisconsin. Journal of Dairy Science. ADSA/ASAS Joint Meeting, July 19-23, 2016. Salt Lake City, UT.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: A study was conducted to evaluate the yield and nutrient composition of photoperiod sensitive (PS) and non-PS forage sorghum, sorghum-sudangrass, and sudangrass compared to corn planted on 2 dates and harvested using single or multiple-cut harvest strategies at 2 research stations (Marshfield and Hancock), each located in central Wisconsin. At each site, treatments were arranged in a randomized complete block design with 4 replicates. The experiment was analyzed as a split-split-plot design with planting date (early or mid-June) designated as the main plot, harvest strategy (single cut or multiple cut) as the subplot, and 8 forage cultivars (corn silage, PS forage sorghum, PS sorghum-sudangrass, forage sorghum, BMR forage sorghum, sorghum-sudangrass, BMR sorghum sudangrass, or PS-BMR sudangrass) designated as the sub-subplot treatment factor. Multiple-cut plots were harvested in late August and early October with single-cut plots harvested only in early October. Data were analyzed independently for each location. Overall, forage yields were numerically greater for Hancock plots compared to Marshfield plots. At Hancock, DM yields were greater for the early compared to late planting date (16,225 vs. 12,080 kg DM/ha; P = 0.014), but there were no effects of planting date at Marshfield (overall mean = 8,228 kg DM/ha; P = 0.90). The lack of response at Marshfield was likely due to delayed germination of early planted plots following heavy rains. At both sites, the single-cut harvest (17,517 kg DM/ha at Hancock; 11,729 kg DM/ha at Marshfield) was greater (P < 0.01) than the multiple-cut harvest system (10,789 kg DM/ha for Hancock; 4,726 kg DM/ha at Marshfield). There were yield differences for variety, as well as variety by harvest type interactions (P < 0.01) at both locations. At both sites, the multiple-cut harvest strategy reduced yields of all hybrids. The sorghum-sudangrass and PS sorghum-sudangrass varieties had the greatest numerical yields among the sorghum types tested under both harvest strategies. Reduced yields of varieties harvested using multiple-cut strategies may reflect reduced tillering and regrowth capabilities of certain varieties. Using a single harvest, several sorghum forage types has similar or better forage yields compared to corn silage.