Silage quality traits of sorghum-sudangrass hybrid and sunn hemp mixtures at different ratios in the Mediterranean climate

  • Sukru Sezgi ozkan Ege University, Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Field Crops, 35100, Izmir, Turkey.

Abstract

This research was conducted to determine some silage quality traits of silage alternatives prepared in different mixture rates of sorghumsudangrass hybrid [Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench x Sorghum sudanense (Piper) Stapf] which is more drought tolerant than maize, and
sunn hemp (Crotalaria juncea L.) which has a high protein content, under Mediterranean ecological conditions. Different silage alternatives
(sorghum-sudangrass hybrid % - sunn hemp %; 100-0, 80-20, 60-40, 50-50, 40-60, 20-80, 0-100, based on fresh matter) were prepared
in a randomized design with four replications in both years. Silage weight loss and pH, dry matter, Flieg score, crude protein, crude ash,
ADF, NDF, metabolizable energy, dry matter intake, digestible dry matter and relative feed value were determined at the end of 8 weeks
ensilage. According to results, good quality silages can be made from all silage alternatives of sorghum-sudangrass hybrid and sunn hemp
without affecting the fermentation process. In addition, silages made by adding sunn hemp to sorghum-sudangrass hybrid at different
rates have more nutritional value than pure sorghum-sudangrass hybrid silage without sacrificing quality. Ensiling the sorghum-sudangrass
hybrid on a fresh matter basis with up to 50% sunn hemp can be recommended for optimum quality. In animal nutrition, it would be best
to choose one of the silage alternatives according to the need in the rations

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