Revista Brasileira de Zootecnia
On-line version ISSN 1806-9290
REZENDE, Cláudia de Paula et al. Tillering dynamics and tissue turnover in elephantgrass cv. Cameroon pasture under rotational stocking. R. Bras. Zootec. [online]. 2008, vol.37, n.10, pp. 1750-1757. ISSN 1806-9290. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1516-35982008001000006.
The population dynamics of tillers and tissue turnover were investigated in pastures of Pennisetum purpureum Schum. cv. Cameroon submitted to different stocking rates under rotational stocking. Two experiments were carried out and the experimental area was characterized by a mean annual rainfall of 1,311 mm and average temperature of 25ºC. In the rainfall period the stocking rates were 3, 4, 5, and 6 steers/ha; in the dry period the stocking rates were 2, 3, 4, and 5 steers/ha. The most intensive grazing lead to the greatest number of basal tillers, with values ranging from 59.02 to 57.75 and 64.64 to 81.36 tillers/m2 for the stocking rates of 5 to 6 and 4 to 5 steers/ha in the rainfall and dry periods, respectively. Considering the aerial tillers, cameroon grass showed 350.83 and 278.05 tillers/m2 for the stocking rates of 5 to 6 steers/ha, in the period of rainfall. In the dry period, the stocking rate of 4 steers/ha lead to 399.20 aerial tillers/m2. Increasing stocking rates reduced the daily stem elongation. Leaf appearance rate (TApF) and leaf elongation rate (TAIF) did not differ among stocking rates neither differed between experiments; TapF ranged from 0.10 and 0.13 live leaves/day and TAIF ranged from 0.82 and 1.36 cm/leaf/day. The average number of live leaves/tiller was 8.04 and 9.51 for the rainfall and dry period, respectively, decreasing with increasing stocking rate.
Keywords : appearance; elongation; leaves; morphogenesis; stocking rate; tillers.