Seasonal chemical composition of wall barley (Hodreum murinum L.) under sub-humid Mediterranean climate
AbstractWall barley (Hodreum murinum L.) is an annual cool-season grass species that grows in areas with a Mediterranean climate. It has potential as a forage source in Jordan. The objective was to determine seasonal chemical composition of wall barley grown under sub-humid Mediterranean conditions. A field trial was conducted during 2000 and 2001 growing seasons at Samta (32°23'N, 35°50'E) in the Ajloun Mountains, Jordan. Data were collected on 28 February, 15 March, 30 March, 15 April and 15 May. The lowest fibre content of leaves was on 28 February and 15 March, with a range of 19.5% to 23.3%. Fibre content of leaves (73.3%) and stems (79.9%) peaked when the plants were mature (15 May). In contrast to fibre, the protein content decreased gradually with age. Protein content of the leaves on 28 February was 25%, after which it declined gradually and reached 2.9% at maturity. The calcium content of the leaves was higher than that of the stems and was sufficient to meet ewes' maintenance requirements. The Ca content of leaves during the period from 28 February to 30 March was 1.2% to 1.1 %, whereas, the content declined with age and reached the lowest value (0.01%) at maturity. The phosphorus content did not show significant variation. It is concluded that age and environmental conditions may affect the nutritive value of wall barley.
African Journal of Range & Forage Science 2003, 20(3): 243–246