Use of Mefluidide to Alter Growth and Nutritive Value of Pearl Millet
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Pearl millet (Pennisetum americanum L. Leeke) has an inherent rapid growth rate that often presents management problems to achieve optimum utilization by livestock throughout the growing season. Both the rapid spring-summer growth rate and photoperiodism that diminishes growth in late summer - early fall creates the need to use both grazing and mechanical defoliation to have efficient use of forage production. The objectives of this 2-year field study were to evaluate the effects of a growth regulator, mefluidide (N-[2, 4-dimethyl-5-([(trifluoromethyl) sulfonyl] amino) phenyl] acetamide), on growth characteristics and nutritive parameters of "Millex 24" pearl millet. Mefluidide was broadcast applied at different rates to determine the effect on dry matter (DM) yield and nutritive value of leaves and stems of pearl millet. Mefluidide reduced DM biomass at each weekly harvest, and at three weeks post-treatment DM was reduced 3-fold in Year 1 and 2-fold in Year 2. Percent leaf, however, was nearly doubled by mefluidide application. Crude protein (CP) of leaves was not affected by mefluidide, however, CP of treated stems was significantly higher (P <0.05) than untreated pearl millet: Fiber components were lowered (P <0.05) in treated leaves and stems compared to untreated pearl millet. The 2-year study showed that mefluidide enhanced nutritive value of pearl millet, but at the expense of DM.
author list (cited authors)
Redmon, L. A., Rouquette, F. M., & Florence, M. J.