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Nutritive Value of Kochia scoparia I. Yield and Chemical Composition at Three Stages of Maturity

Sherrod, L. B.
Agronomy journal 1971 v.63 no.2 pp. 343-344
Bassia scoparia, crude fiber, crude protein, dry matter accumulation, flowering, leaves, livestock, maturity stage, minerals, nutritive value
Volunteer, wild stands of kochia (Kochla scoparia (L.) Schrad.) were harvested at three maturity stages to determine dry matter yield and composition and to evaluate kochia as a potential forage for livestock. The plants were in the prebloom stage of growth at the first cutting, mid-bloom at the second, and full bloom at the third cutting. Dry matter yields and crude fiber levels increased and crude protein, percentage leaves, and. leaf: stem ratios decreased as stage of maturity advanced. Dry matter yields were 3,548, 8,708 and 11,327 ks/ha at the first, second and third stages, respectively. Crude protein ranged from 25.0 to 13.2%, and crude fiber from 17.9 to 37.0% of dry matter. Concentration of both macro and micro minerals either declined somewhat or remained almost constant as maturity progressed. These results suggest that kochia has high nutritive value as a forage for livestock, particularly in the earlier stages of growth.