Packaging Practices of Hybrid Napier
Authors: Taramani Yadav, D. K. Rathore, Sourabh Kumar

Hybrid Napier

Scientific Name- Pennisetum purpureum
Family- Poaceae
Origin- Napier grass is native of Rhodesia in South Africa

History
The name napier grass is given in the honour of Col. Napier, 1909 to the fodder value of this grass
It was introduced in India in 1912 from South Africa

Geographical Distribution

Asia, Africa, southern Europe and America
In India, it is cultivated on about 1 lakh ha mainly in the states of Punjab, Haryana, UP, Bihar, MP, Orissa, Gujarat & Assam

Climatic Requirement
Napier bajra hybrid (NBH) performs well in areas having temperatures >15oC.
It is a tropical grass, which can with stand drought for a short spell
This grass does not survive in heavy rainfall and frost prone areas

Soil and its preparation
It can withstand saline conditions
A fertile loam is best suited for its optimum growth
A good seed-bed should be firm and well leveled
First ploughing with mould board plough, and subsequent 2 cross ploughings with cultivator
Planking should follow every ploughing

Varieties

Varieties Characteristics Green fodder yield (t/ha)
IGFRI-3, 6 Suitable for central India, north-east and northern hills 90-160
IGFRI-7 It is suitable, hilly, sub-humid and sub-temperate areas of India. 140-170
IGFRI-10 It is suitable for whole country and acidic and saline soils 150-180
PBN-83, 16 Suitable for Punjab 125-170
Co-3 Central and south India 130-200


Seed and Sowing time

Propagated vegetatively
Root slips and stem cuttings are used as propagating material
The root slips/stem cuttings are planted at 50 cm x 50 cm (sole cropping) to 100 cm x 50 cm (in intercropping) spacing
40,000 and 20,000 root slips/stem cuttings/ha are required for sole and intercropping
It can be planted from February- April

Manures and Fertilizers

FYM application @ 30 t/ha at the time of land preparation is recommended
A fertilizer dose of 50-60-50 kg/ha of N-P2O5-K2O is applied as basal
After each harvest, 50 kg N/ha is applied with irrigation

Water management

The crop requires irrigation during non-rainy season (October-March) at 15-20 days interval
During summer (April-May/June) irrigations are given at 7-10 days interval
The water requirement of this crop varies from 80-100 cm

Weed management

Two or three weedings are required to control the weeds
When broad leaf weeds pose a serious problem, application of 2,4-D @ 1 kg/ha is recommended

Pests and Diseases

There are no major pests and diseases, except leaf blight damage caused by Helminthosporium sacqhri in some varieties
Clean material is distributed will help prevent the spread of the disease

Harvesting

The first cut at 65 DAS and subsequent cuttings at 45 days interval
In a year, 8-10 cuts are possible
While cutting the grass, it is desirable to leave a height of at least 10-15 cm from the ground level

Yield

A good crop yields about 150-300 t green fodder/ha/year
The CP and CF content of NBH fodder is 10 and 30% respectively

Nutritive value

Dry matter - 16.20 %
Calcium - 0.88 %
Phosphorus - 0.24 %
Oxalates (Max.) - 2.97 %
Digestibility - 58.00 %


About Author / Additional Info:
Ph.D research Scholar, Karnal, Haryana