Effect of different spacing of Napier grass (Pennisetum purpureum) intercropped with or without Lablab (Lablab purpureus) on digestibility of Napier grass
Keywords:Napier grass, LabLab, Digestibility, Soil
This study was conducted with an objective of determining effect of three spacing of Napier grass intercropped with or without Lablab (Lablab purpureus) on digestibility of Napier grass in a 2 x 3 factorial arrangement in RCBD with 4 blocks. Spacing was 1m x 0.5m, 0.75m x 0.5m, and 0.5m x 0.5m. Intercropping decreased the electro conductivity but increased the available phosphorous content of the soil and did not affect the pH, organic carbon and total nitrogen of the soil. The in vitro DM (IVDMD) and OM digestibility (IVOMD) of Napier grass was increased by intercropping with lablab. However, spacing and interaction of spacing with intercropping did not affect the IVDMD and IVOMD content of Napier grass. In sacco degradability of DM and OM of Napier grass for many of the incubation hours including 48 hour which was relatively higher for the 1m x 0.5m spacing and for the one intercropped with lablab. The DM and OM in sacco degradability characteristics were almost all affected by spacing and intercropping but without an apparent consistent trend. In conclusion, intercropping with lablab had a positive influence on the IVDMD and IVOMD. Conversely, spacing failed to have significant impact on these parameters. However, 1 m x 0.5 m spacing appeared to have better effect on the in sacco DM and OM degradability and effective degradability. As such 1 m x 0.5m spacing and intercropping with lablab can be of a better choice based on the results of this study.
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