March 2023 Enhanced Nutrition Sorghum

The hypothesis we first broached in 2020 SARE research grant (Jan 2021 click to see) supporting the use of male sterile BMR sorghum with nutrient enhance harvest, has been validated by our Sorghum Check-Off repeated replicated research.  Normal sorghum will have fertilized seeds at the top of the plant.  The nutrients formed by photosynthesis after seed fertilization are preferentially moved to the seed sink much like a corn plant moves nutrients to the kernel on the ear.  The difference is that the seeds of sorghum quickly get very hard and are not digested in the rumen.  Their small size makes any processing difficult without destroying the forage effective fiber and turning the crop into soup.   Additional research found that breaking the seed does little to increase the digestibility and the broken seed’s nutrition is lost out of the back of the cow.  Adding insult to injury, having several pounds of seed at the top of an 8 to 12 foot stalk is a setup for lodging.  Multiple times in my research we had a high yielding crop that was completely lodged before reaching harvest maturity.


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