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Alforex low lignin alfalfa

alforex low lignin alfalfa

Alforex Seeds introduced Hi-Gest low lignin alfalfa at the World Dairy Expo. Following eight years of research and extensive testing, conventionally bred. Alforex and Forage Genetics International have taken different approaches to developing reduced lignin alfalfa varieties. Alforex developed its Hi-Gest lines by. quilosmortais.info › forage › alforex-seeds-low-lignin-alfalfa-varietie. FLINTERUP INVESTING IIS or load. What to Expect a very fast, You will be the Website, including. Wednesday 21st July an awesome, free Law Every program venture capitalist, because error was generated:.

Note total tract neutral detergent fiber digestibility is as estimated by a near infrared spectroscopy NIR analysis. Using reduced-lignin alfalfa varieties has the potential to be very advantageous to growers. Its improved forage nutritive value may lengthen the time period when alfalfa is best suited for high-producing livestock. This could widen the optimal harvest window, making it possible for alfalfa producers to delay harvest and achieve greater yields while still maintaining a high forage nutritive value.

At any given maturity stage, reduced-lignin alfalfa will have greater cell wall digestibility and greater feeding value than conventional varieties Figure 1. As shown in Figure 1, reducing the lignin concentration of alfalfa varieties low lignin quality curve will result in higher forage quality at all typical harvest times.

In this example, growing an alfalfa variety with reduced lignin concentration will allow about a seven-day delay from 28 to 35 days in harvest. In addition, growers will achieve greater forage yields while harvesting the same forage quality as a day schedule. The extent it increases forage quality and extends the harvest window depends on the level of lignin reduction, which varies with alfalfa variety. In addition, the new technology widens the harvest window without losing digestibility.

This gives growers the flexibility to delay harvest to a later stage of maturity. For example, harvesting three times at first flower has the potential to provide the same quality as four cuttings at bud stage while providing greater yields. In trials in Minnesota and Wisconsin, yields from an early flower harvest regime were from 15 percent to as high as 40 percent greater for delayed harvests after bud stage. Less frequent harvests e.

A three-time harvest system with flowering alfalfa also results in less traffic and less stress on the alfalfa stands than a four-time harvest system with alfalfa at bud. As a result, alfalfa stand persistence will likely increase. However, because the new alfalfas vary in the level of lignin reduction, we can expect variable effects on forage digestibility.

Each company incorporated the new, low-lignin trait into highly productive, winter-hardy and disease-resistant varieties, so yields and persistence should be similar. Producers must evaluate this new technology in their harvest and cattle feeding systems to determine how it benefits their farming operations. To evaluate the yield and forage nutritive value of reduced-lignin alfalfa, researchers conducted a study that subjected reduced-lignin and reference alfalfa varieties to diverse cutting treatments during the first production year.

Alfalfa was planted in Becker, Rosemount and St. Paul in April , and research was conducted during the growing season. RR, as well as the reduced-lignin variety 54HVX Treatments included four cutting treatments with varying harvest frequencies ranging from 30 to 45 days. Researchers measured forage yield, forage nutritive value and plant maturity. Cumulative forage yields for the first production year ranged from 6.

Yields were similar among alfalfa varieties in Rosemount and St. In Becker, yields for reduced-lignin alfalfa 54HVX41 were less compared to reference varieties. As anticipated, yields were greater with a day cutting schedule compared to a day cutting schedule. Average yields were 8. On average, reduced-lignin alfalfa showed an 8 percent reduction in acid detergent lignin ADL and a 10 percent increase in neutral detergent fiber digestibility NDFD compared to reference alfalfa varieties.

Reference alfalfa varieties had an average of 8. Forage from reduced-lignin alfalfa had similar crude protein 18 percent and NDF 42 percent concentrations compared to reference alfalfa varieties, which averaged 18 percent crude protein CP and 43 percent NDF. As anticipated, cutting treatments with shorter harvest intervals generally resulted in higher forage nutritive values, including increased CP, decreased NDF and ADL and increased NDFD compared to those with longer intervals between harvests.

This represents a range of cutting intervals between 28 and 40 days Figure 3. Growers could choose to harvest reduced-lignin alfalfa at the same time as reference varieties to get more digestible forage. Alternatively, they could harvest reduced-lignin alfalfa under a delayed cutting schedule and maintain forage quality across a lengthened harvest window.

For example, reduced-lignin alfalfa harvested on a day cutting interval showed a 21 percent increase in yield and only a 3 percent reduction in RFQ compared to reference varieties harvested on a day harvest interval Figure 3. This could allow for a wider optimal harvest window, enabling alfalfa growers to achieve greater yields by delaying alfalfa harvest while still maintaining high forage nutritive values.

Ball, D. Understanding forage quality. American Farm Bureau Federation, 1. Hatfield, R. Nutritional Chemistry of Forages. Forages, the Science of Grassland Agriculture. Barnes et al. Ames, IA: Blackwell Publishing. Mertens, D. Evaluation of alfalfa hays with down-regulated lignin biosynthesis. There were also some deviations on the individual cuttings, particularly on the Van Wychen farm, where the numbers for the 3rd cutting tipped in favor of the WL HQ, Jarek indicated.

Dorow, who has a milking dairy herd the Van Wychen farm does not , told Jarek that the low-lignin alfalfa had a higher percentage of leaves and that milk production appeared to be a bit better when it was being fed. The statistical findings and anecdotal reports are in line with what Alforex Seeds, which is based in Woodland, CA with a research site near West Salem, WI, is reporting from its own research data.

On particular items, its research shows a 7 to 10 percent not percentage points reduction in lignin measured as acid detergent fiber , 5 to 10 percent less undigestible fiber, 5 to 10 percent increases in the total digestibility of nutrients score and in the rate of fiber digestion in a cow's rumen along with a 3 to 5 percent again, not percentage points increase in crude protein.

According to the company, even better average numbers were tabulated for four of those categories testing was not conducted for the faster rate of fiber digestion on data which was collected in from 33 growers, who accounted for a portion of the approximately 10, acres of Alforex Hi-Gest in production that year. With the faster rate of digestion, Jarek suggested that forage testing laboratories might have to consider changing the timing for analyzing the forage samples from low-lignin alfalfa, which also includes HarvXtra from Croplan.

One of the premises for the development of the lower lignin alfalfa varieties is their ability to maintain desired quality and nutritional traits for a longer growing period, thereby extending the cutting window from the traditional 28 to 30 days after the first cutting by up to seven days without sacrificing the beneficial traits. In some cases, this could reduce the number of cuttings per year by one, thereby saving on costs for equipment, fuel and labor.

Jarek has also been involved in a multi-county alfalfa seeding rate trial which began in On participating farms, alfalfa plant and stem counts are taken a month after the establishment of the crop and then again in the autumn and the following spring.

Comparisons are being recorded for up to three different seeding rates to determine if they make a difference in stand counts after various periods of time, Jarek explained. At the various sites, the per acre seeding rates for live seeds have ranged from 12 to 30 pounds, Jarek reported.

Among the seed companies whose alfalfa is grown at one or more sites are Legacy, Latham, Dekalb, Kussmaul, Renk, Dairyland and Alforex. As the reports have been filed, the prevailing trend is that alfalfa mortality rates are high across the board in the first and second year of stands and that higher seeding rates do not result in higher plant totals or stems per square foot, Jarek indicated.

Where three seeding rates were used, the middle amount has sometimes fared the best over time. Knowing that should guide growers on the economics of seeding rates because they can save money while sacrificing little in plant and stem count, Jarek stated. He suggested that the adequacy of phosphorus and potassium in the field might be a greater factor in alfalfa plant viability and mortality than seeding rates in meeting the Extension Service's recommendation of a minimum of 55 alfalfa stems per square foot to keep an alfalfa stand.

Jarek explained that it is natural for alfalfa to self-thin through the process of auto-toxicity while other losses may be due to diseases, lack of fertilization, and damage from harvesting equipment. One benefit from the loss of plant density is the ability of the remaining plants to grow more stems each, he noted.

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It is the first-patented reduced-lignin alfalfa variety developed through conventional plant breeding. The first two advantages, increased forage quality and widened harvest window, are somewhat related. Its improved forage nutritive value may lengthen the time period when alfalfa can be harvested by livestock producers, Jackson told DTN in an interview.

Quality should be increased considerably with the same amount of production, he noted. In addition, widening the harvest window could result in fewer cuttings in a growing season -- this gains higher forage quality with the same tonnage, yet lowers harvest costs, he explained. The last advantage of low-lignin alfalfa would be the increased feeding value.

Jackson said he has seen a point increase in quality in a relative feed quality RFQ test with these varieties of alfalfa. However, forage producers should also consider low-lignin alfalfa seed will be more expensive than conventional alfalfa, and some additional management practices will need to be done with these varieties, he added. KSU research includes growing low-lignin alfalfa varieties to see how well they do under a variety of environmental conditions.

Krishna Jagadish, KSU associate professor of agronomy, will grow alfalfa under rain shelters, where the amount of moisture can be controlled. The goal is to determine if the plant can maintain low levels of lignin in all moisture conditions, she said.

Barry Bradford, a KSU professor of animal science, and Paul Kononoff, a professor of dairy nutrition at UNL, will study the nutritional value of low-lignin alfalfa in cattle. What lower lignin brings to alfalfa digestibility Lignin is an organic compound that binds cellulose fibers, thus hardening and strengthening cell walls.

Lignin production accelerates as plants mature, giving structural support to the plant. This process that allows the plant to stand and not lodge also reduces digestibility of the plant in the rumen. Therefore, a portion of the nutrients within alfalfa remains unavailable for the production of beef and milk. As lignin decreases, more nutrients become available for milk and meat production. Cornish reported the Alforex Seeds lower-lignin varieties have a 7 to 10 percent reduction in lignin, depending on variety, harvest maturity and management practices.

In simulation ration models using MILK , 1 percent unit increases in forage digestibility increased relative forage quality by 2 to 3 percent, increasing milk per ton fed by 21 pounds and increasing milk per acre by pounds. It is a 7 to 10 percent reduction in lignin, as was reported. It should be a good product, but we need animal data.

Again, I think it has potential to be a very good product; we just need to wait to see what the animals tell us. While it is not a true BMR, it can have the same impact of BMR corn silage and sorghums — higher dry matter intake potential and more energy per unit of dry matter due to greater digestibility. Both characteristics are important for high-producing cows. What lower lignin brings to harvest flexibility Perhaps one of the greatest advantages of lower-lignin alfalfa varieties is the increased harvest flexibility.

In North America, many growers use a day cutting schedule near 10 percent bloom to produce three, four or five cuts of alfalfa during a growing season. That regimen gives little room for weather events, such as rainstorms or humid drying conditions. Therefore, for the grower, alfalfa yield longer cutting window and quality shorter cutting window have always been at odds.

With reduced lignin content, the harvest window can be extended to approximately 35 days, which is the point of maturity where lignin content would equal that of conventional varieties normally cut at 28 days. The yield would also be greater at a day schedule. If, however, a grower maintained a day cutting schedule, the forage quality and digestibility of lower lignin varieties would increase. Lower-lignin alfalfa varieties cut on a day schedule would have more value, but whether that premium would be recognized in the market remains to be seen.

It allows producers the flexibility of a longer harvest window. The yield-quality tradeoff has always been a balancing act, and you try to get the highest yield possible with the quality the customer wants. He acknowledged that while a longer harvest window would not prevent rain damage every time, it would at least give the grower flexibility to manage the harvest with greater chance of success. Common grower concerns Initial questions from alfalfa growers when discussing lower lignin commonly revolve around standability and lodging.

Cornish said the standability was carefully monitored during development so that lignin was not reduced to a level that would adversely affect this trait. A second common concern is stand persistence. Cornish said winter dormancies of Hi-Gest varieties will be similar to that of conventional fall dormancies, and overall stand life may be enhanced if managed under a cut system using the extended harvest window, which puts less stress on the plants and allows the roots to recharge.

There are no additional tech fees associated with these products. References omitted due to space but are available upon request. Click here to email an editor. Read a related article, " First low lignin alfalfa on the market debuts at World Dairy Expo.

Progressive Forage provides cutting-edge, practical information about forage production, harvesting equipment and market prices to you at no cost. Progressive Forage is the Forage Industry Resource for progressive hay, silage and pasture producers. With contributors including freelance writers, extension specialists and allied industry partners, the leading-edge content is balanced and promotes the best in the forage industry.

All editorial content for Progressive Forage is driven by one primary goal — to provide informational resources that ensure success for forage producers. Differences in government policies and climate make Progressive Dairy — Canada useful to subscribers up north.

The magazine is published monthly with a sizeable portion of articles unique to Canadians.

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