Original Articles

Effect of nitrogen on the oxalate and calcium content of Kikuyu grass (Pennisetum clandestinum Hochst)

DOI: 10.1080/02566702.1990.9648215
Author(s): J.P. Marais, Republic of South Africa

Abstract

The effect of the nitrogen content of Kikuyu grass (Pennisetum clandestinum) on the oxalate and calcium content of leaf and stem material was investigated. The grass contained equal portions of soluble and insoluble oxalate. Leaf material contained more than three times as much total oxalate as stem tissue. A high nitrogen content was associated with a high insoluble oxalate content of the sward. The calcium content of both leaf and stem material was extremely low. Results suggested that approximately 95% of the calcium could be bound as calcium oxalate and would probably not be available to ruminants. The bio‐availability of calcium in the herbage tended to decrease with an increase in nitrogen content of the grass.

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