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Castillo M.S.,Dep. Of Crop Science | Sollenberger L.E.,University of Florida | Mullenix M.K.,Auburn University | Blount A.R.,North Florida Research and Education Center | And 2 more authors.
Crop Science | Year: 2015

Establishing rhizoma peanut (Arachis glabrata Benth.; RP ) in strips into existing bahiagrass (Paspalum notatum Flüggé) pastures has potential to increase forage nutritive value, decrease N fertilizer use, and improve N cycling. Grazing the grass–legume mixture in the year after planting may be possible, but appropriate grazing management strategies have not been defined. The objectives were to determine (i) the effect of year-after-planting (Y2) grazing management on ‘Florigraze’ RP performance when strip planted in bahiagrass swards, and (ii) the interaction of Y2 defoliation strategies with those imposed in the year of planting (Y1). Treatments were the factorial combinations of four Y1 defoliation strategies (no defoliation, hay production, simulated continuous stocking, and rotational stocking every 28 d) and three Y2 grazing frequencies (simulated continuous, 28 d, and 42 d to a 15-cm bahiagrass stubble height). Grazing pastures in Y2 reduced RP contribution relative to that at the end of Y1. Canopy cover and frequency decreased from 30 to 10% and 80 to 50%, respectively, due to Y2 grazing for both Y1 no defoliation and hay production treatments. Cover remained below 10% in Y2 for both Y1 simulated continuous and rotational stocking treatments. Spread of RP into adjacent bahiagrass was greater in Y2 plots that in Y1 were not defoliated or were used for hay production (~27 cm) than grazed (~0 cm) plots. Results indicate that grazing during Y2 negatively affects RP establishment regardless of grazing frequency or RP cover at the beginning of Y2. Cattle preference for RP resulted in overgrazing; thus, if grazing occurs during RP establishment, target endpoints should be based on RP strips not the surrounding bahiagrass. © Crop Science Society of America. All rights reserved.

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