Management of Calliandra calothyrsus for fodder production in Jamaica.
A trial was established in Jamaica to examine the harvest potential of Calliandra calothyrsus for fodder. An established plantation was subjected to 2 cutting heights (75 and 150 cm) and 2 cutting intervals (9 and 12 weeks) for a period of 12 months. Yields per annum were greater under longer cutting intervals. Cutting height had no impact on annual yields. Dry matter yields of up to 12 t/ha/year were achieved with a combination of 150-cm cutting height and 12-week cutting intervals. Cutting interval had an effect on the proportion of usable fodder, with 78.7 and 72.3% of the total biomass being usable fodder with the 9- and 12-week intervals, respectively. Yields of individual scheduled harvests decreased over the cutting period. At the end of 12 months of regular harvesting, plots were left uncut for a period of 6 months. Final evaluation of the plots after the 6-month recovery phase showed that the management regimes imposed may exceed the regrowth capacity of the calliandra plantation at this site. Authors' summary. KEYWORDS: TROPAG | Calliandra calothyrsus | feed legumes | Calliandra | harvesting frequency | height | agroforestry | JAMAI.