Plant population and row spacing on biomass sorghum yield performance

Espaçamento entrelinhas e população de plantas no desempenho produtivo do sorgo biomassa

Andre May Vander Fillipe de Souza Geraldo de Amaral Gravina Pedro Gonçalves Fernandes About the authors


Biomass sorghum is one of the most promising crops for the production of electricity through the burning in high-pressure boilers, due to its high calorific value, high yield, seed propagation, short cycle, and to the possibility of full mechanization of its agricultural processes. However, there is still a lack of information about its cultural practices. To this end, this research aimed to evaluate the influence of row spacing and plant population on the yield performance of biomass sorghum. The experimental design was a randomized block, in factorial scheme of 4 x 4, with four row spacings (0.5, 0.7, 0.9 and 1.1m), and four plant populations (80,000; 100,000; 120,000 and 140,000 plants ha-1), with three replications. The characteristics evaluated were: plant height, stem diameter, number of leaves, number of tillers per plant, fresh weight per plant and biomass. Total biomass yield was greatly influenced by the row spacing, showing a sharp reduction when row spacing increased, in the two years of study, changing from 180.27 to 114.42t ha-1 in the 2012/13 crop year, and from 146.50 to 102.56t ha-1 in the 2013/14 crop year, for 0.5 and 1.1m between rows, respectively. The lowest yields observed in the second year of the study were due to unfavorable weather conditions in the period.

Key words:
lignocellulosic sorghum; plant spacing; seeding density; bio-energy; cultural management

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