Evaluation of various exotic grasses in semi-arid conditions of Pabbi hills, Kharian range.
A field study was carried out to investigate the response of various warm season forage grass species (blue panic grass (Panicum antidotale), green panic grass (Panicum maximum), elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum), Mott grass (Pennisetum benthium), Pangola grass (Digitaria decumbens), finger grass (D. swazilandensis [D. milanjiana]), Setaria grass (Setaria anceps [S. sphacelata var. sericea]), and vetiver grass (Vetiveria zizanoides)) under semi-arid conditions of hills, Kharian range, Pakistan, during 2006. Sprouting response of blue panic was the highest (91%), followed by Mott grass (77%) and Pangola grass (75%) in the first data record (April 2006) while blue panic grass also showed the highest sprouting percentage (81%) followed by finger grass (63%) during the second data record (June, 2006). Fresh biomass production was highest in blue panic followed by finger grass during spring season. Dry matter yield was also higher in blue panic than other grasses during spring 2006. In monsoon season, more fresh biomass was produced by finger grass followed by vetiver grass and Pangola grass and more dry matter production by finger grass followed by vetiver grass. Buffel grass had the highest crude protein contents (9.24%) along with highest total digestible nutrients (54.51%). Blue panic grass and Digitaria grass are recommended for semi-arid conditions of Kharian range.