Productivity of Sesbania species
Keywords:Sesbania species, Productivity, Green manure, Fodder legumes, Pulpwood Crops
AbstractThree field experiments assessed yields of Sesbania species for potential uses for pulp fibre, animal fodder or green manure, 35 annual Sesbania accessions were tested, 25 of which were considered high-yielding varieties (HYV). These produced 8-17 t ha-1 dry matter containing 150-245 kg ha -1 N when sown at 125 000 plants ha-1 and harvested 98 days after planting (OAP). Most HYVs were similar to S. cannabina or the related S. bispinosa, which are grown as green manures in Asian lowland rice systems. In a concurrent experiment, 10 accessions were harvested twice, cut at 50 cm above ground level at 49 and 84 OAP. Cutting slightly depressed HYV dry matter production, but N production was enhanced compared with the 98-day growth period without cutting. In a third trial, perennial Sesbania accessions including S. sesban and S. grandiflora were evaluated for fodder production in comparison with Leucaena leucocephala and Calliandra callothyrsus over a series of harvests during one year from planting. High-yielding S. sesban accessions produced 20 t ha-1 dry matter in 5-6 cuts during the first year.