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Evaluation of farmer-grown improved sorghum cultivars for stover quality traits

Author(s): K Gurava Reddy | Blummel Michael | P Parthasarathy Rao | Belum VS Reddy | S Ramesh | KMV Prasada Reddy

Journal: Journal of SAT Agricultural Research
ISSN 0973-3094

Volume: 1;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 3pp.;
Date: 2005;
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Keywords: in vitro digestibility | genotype environment interaction | genotypes | Sorghum bicolor | crop yield | Andhra Pradesh | nitrogen | dry matter | cultivars | crude protein | India | soil types

Seeds of 4 improved high-yielding sorghum cultivars (CSH 16, CSV 15, PSV 16 and S 35) were supplied to 48 farmers from 4 villages (Manmarry, Udityal, Ganagpur and Kandawada) in the Mahabubnagar and Ranga Reddy districts of Andhra Pradesh, India. Each improved cultivar was planted along with the traditional yellow sorghum cultivar (locally called patcha jonna; intercropped with pigeon pea in a 5:1 row ratio) on black, barka (light black in colour with low fertility and low moisture retention capacity), chalka (red in colour with large pebbles and low fertility) and red soils. Data were recorded for stover nitrogen dry matter, crude protein and in vitro digestibility as well as grain and fodder yields. The results showed that the genetic component, rather than soil type and genotype x soil type interaction components, was important in total variation of the cultivars for stover nitrogen content and in vitro digestibility. The non-significant mean squares due to soil type and genotype x soil type interaction indicate the potential of genetic improvement of stover nitrogen content and in vitro digestibility for wide adaptation. Stover nitrogen dry matter was highest in CSH 16, followed by S 35, CSV 15 and PSV 16. The stover digestibility of improved cultivars was better than that of local sorghum. While the improved cultivars were on par with the local cultivars for stover nitrogen content irrespective of soil type, they were significantly superior to the local cultivar for stover digestibility in barka and red soils. The study provides sufficient evidence to dispel farmers' perceptions that improved cultivars have poor stover nutritive value and digestibility compared with local cultivars. Complementing the stover quality, the quantity obtained by the farmers with improved cultivars was better or comparable with local cultivars.
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