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Journal of Biological Sciences

Year: 2005  |  Volume: 5  |  Issue: 4  |  Page No.: 493 - 496

Chemical Composition of Napier Grass (Pennisetum purpureum) at Different Stages of Growth and Napier Grass Silages with Additives

A.A. Aganga, U.J. Omphile, T. Thema and J.C. Baitshotlhi

Abstract

The study was conducted to determine the influence of additives on the chemical composition of napier grass (P. purpureum) cut at five different heights of growth (50, 75 cm, 1, 1.25 and 1.5 m). They were harvested monthly from September 2003 to January 2004. The grass samples were ensiled and then analysed for the proximate composition, in vitro digestibility, nutrients and mineral elements. The young and immature napier grass cut at 50 cm height were highly digestible but as maturity increased, yield also increased, but quality decreased. The digestibility decreased as lignifications of the plant material increased with grass height and maturity. There was improved chemical composition and digestibility of napier grass silage cut at different heights treated with additives compared to the plain napier grass silage without additives.

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