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Publication Type J
Authors Rao, N. K., I. McCann, S. A. Shahid, K. U. R. Butta, B. Al Araj and S. Ismail
Title Sustainable use of salt-degraded and abandoned farms for forage production using halophytic grasses
Source Crop & Pasture Science
Author Keywords alternative forages freshwater scarcity livestock feed salinity management salt-tolerance tolerance mechanisms salinity tolerance arabian peninsula growth irrigation prospects crops water
Abstract Four halophytic perennial forage grass species, Distichlis spicata, Paspalum vaginatum, Sporobolus virginicus and S. arabicus, were planted in three salt-degraded and abandoned farms at Mezaira'a, Madinat Zayed and Ghayathi in the United Arab Emirates. The salinity of the irrigation water in the three farms at the time of establishment of the grasses ranged between 14.1 and 17.4 dS m(-1). The productivity of the grasses was assessed over 3 years (2012-14) by harvesting three times per year. Averaged over locations and species, dry biomass yields of the four grasses ranged between 32.64 and 40.68 t ha(-1) year(-1). Sporobolus virginicus produced highest biomass yields, followed by D. spicata, P. vaginatum and S. arabicus, although differences among the four grasses were marginal. In Madinat Zayed and Ghayathi, the average respective forage yields in terms of water productivity were estimated to be 1.68 and 2.42 kg dry matterm-3 water, better than the reported yield of the traditionally cultivated Rhodes grass (Chloris gayana) from less saline conditions. The study showed that the four halophytic grasses have the potential to contribute to rationalised use of scarce water resources for forage production, besides providing options for enhancing domestic forage production through rehabilitating the salt-affected farms that are unproductive for conventional crops.
Author Address [Rao, Nanduri Kameswara; Shahid, Shabbir Ahmad; Butta, Khalil Ur Rahman; Al Araj, Basel; Ismail, Shoaib] Int Ctr Biosaline Agr, POB 14660, Dubai, U Arab Emirates. [McCann, Ian] KISR, Kuwait, Kuwait. Rao, NK (reprint author), Int Ctr Biosaline Agr, POB 14660, Dubai, U Arab Emirates. n.rao@biosaline.org.ae
ISSN 1836-0947
ISBN 1836-0947
29-Character Source Abbreviation Crop Pasture Sci.
Year Published 2017
Volume 68
Issue 5
Beginning Page 483-492
Digital Object Identifier (DOI) 10.1071/cp16197
Unique Article Identifier WOS:000404258100010
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