Effects of Cultivar and Harvesting Time on Growth Components and Chemical Composition of Hydroponic Sorghum Fodder
The study was conducted to evaluate the growth components and chemical composition of four varieties of local sorghum [Red chakalari (V1), White chakalari (V2), Kaura (V3) and Jigari (V4)] seeds grown in an improvised hydroponic medium at three different harvesting periods (8, 12 and 16 days). The experiment was conducted as a 4×3 factorial arrangement in a randomized complete block design (RCBD). The results of hydroponic sorghum fodder (HSF) production showed significant (P<0.05) difference in germination percentages across the varieties, in the following ascending order V1 (red chakalari) >V2 (white chakalari) >V4 (jigari) >V3 (kaura). While the means yield and height at different harvesting periods were not statistically (P>0.05) affected among the varieties. However, individual yields showed significant (P<0.05) variation across the varieties and between the different harvesting periods with 8th day sprout having the highest yield followed by 12th day and lastly 16th day harvest. Nonetheless, chemical composition were inconsistent among the varieties but V4 recorded the highest crude protein value (14.05%) at 8th day post-harvest while organic and dry matter were superior at 12th day harvest in V3. It was concluded that HSF at 8th day harvest was the best in growth parameters of the plant and nutrient contents and all the varieties can be grown as fodder for livestock feeding.
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