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Applied Research

Chris Penrose


Farmers may not plant biomass crops for energy production unless there are additional options. Sorghum-sudangrass hybrids are warm season annual forages that look like sudangrass in growth but are generally taller, with larger stems and leaves. They can be used for grazing, hay and haylage. In addition, they may be a possibility for biomass production. Four varieties were evaluated in a replicated trial in 2012 at the Eastern Agricultural Research Station in Southeastern Ohio for yield, quality and energy value. The plots were harvested on October 15 which favored higher yields over quality to maximize growth for biomass production. The four varieties in the trial were Sordan Headless, 1990, Trudan Headless and SS405, from Chomatin Inc. Yield and quality were comparable to corn silage. Yields ranged from 26,253-43,346 pounds dry matter per acre with no significant differences in varieties (P=0.05). There were no significant differences in ADF, In Vitro Dry Matter Digestibility and BTU’s. There were significant differences in crude protein (6.32%, 1990; 7.40%, SS405; 7.69%, Sordan Headless; 9.00% Trudan Headless). There were also significant differences in neutral detergent fiber (61.42, Sordan Headless; 62.00% SS405; 63.44%, Trudan Headless; and 67.57%, 1990).The variety (1990) that had the highest yield had the lowest crude protein and the variety with the highest crude protein (Trudan Headless) had the lowest yield. The energy levels ranged from 7206-7535 BTU’s per pound of dry matter which is comparative to switchgrass.  The varieties have potential for forage production and a biomass crop to provide renewable energy.



Poster has NOT been presented at any previous NACAA AM/PIC

This poster is being submitted for judging. It will be displayed at the AM/PIC if not selected as a State winner. The abstract will be published in the proceedings.

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Authors: C.D. Penrose, R.C. Little
  1. Penrose, C. Extension Educator and Associate Professor, OSU Extension, Morgan Co., Ohio, 43756
  2. Little, R. Extension Educator and Associate Professor, OSU Extension, Guernsey Co., Ohio, 43768