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Sorghum-Sundan Hybrids or Sudangrass (Sorghum vulgare vr. sudanense)

Plant Characteristics: Tall leafy annual with a seed head as an open panicle.

Establishment: Drought tolerant and can be grown throughout the state. Seed should be drilled at 20 to 25 lb/ac between May and June or broadcast at 30 to 35 lb/ac. Planting depth ranges from 1/4 to 1/2 inch. Armyworms could be a problem.

Fertilization: Poor tolerance to acid soils. Adapted to sandy-loam soils with pH of 5.5 to 7.5. Liming is necessary in high acid soils. Phosphorous moves slowly in the soil, so apply it before planting or band it at seeding. Sudangrass is very responsive to nitrogen. Split applications are important in order to reduce the possibility of nitrate poisoning in animals.

Grazing/Hay Management: Sundangrass can be used for pasture, hay, or silage production. It could be very productive with yields ranging from 4 to 10 tons/ac between June and September. Rotational grazing with high stocking rate is recommended to utilize rapid growth and maintain forage quality. Stems may need to be removed after grazing. Hay production should occur when plants are 30 to 40 inches tall.

Forage Quality: High quality is harvested at maturity. Prussic acid or nitrate accumulation could be a problem under plant stress.

Varieties/Cultivars: Piper, Greenleaf, Imperial hybrid sudangrass.

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