Evaluation of Desho Grass (Pennisetum Pedicellatum) Productivity under Different Fertilizer Combinations and Spacing at Gamo Gofa Zone, Ethiopia
Desho grass is a perennial drought tolerant feed to contribute a lot for dry season feed demand of Ethiopian livestock. A field experiment was conducted at Chano Substation, Southern Ethiopia, to determine dry matter yield of desho grass using factorial combination of five fertilizer rates (0:0, 11.5:43.5, 15:59.5, 20:64 and 25:91.5 kg /ha P:N) and four spacing (plant: row) (25:50, 50:75, 75:100 and 100:125 cm) in RCBD with three replications. Plant height, tiller number and dry matter yield were computed with Least Significant Difference. With increase in P: N rate from 0:0-25:91.5 kg/ha; plant height increased from 61 to 93 cm and tiller number shown an increment from 214.2 to 308.6. The respective increase in tiller number with plant and row spacing from narrower (25; 50cm) to wider (100:125 cm) was 248.5 to 346. Dry matter yield increased from 9.27 to 25.54 ton/ha for the fertilizer rate from control to 20:64 kg/ha. Dry matter yield increased for wider spacing from 25;50 cm to 75;100 cm having the yield of 14 to 26.61 ton/ha. The present experiment suggests that at low lands of Southern Ethiopia the optimum dry matter yield could be obtained at phosphorus and nitrogen rate of 20;64 kg/ ha with 75;100 cm plant and row spacing of Desho grass.