Bajra Napier hybrid grass

(Pennisetum purpureum X P. americanum)


Hybrid Napier - Cumbu Napier Ottupull / Bajra Napier Hybrid

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  • It is a triploid hybrid between Napier and pearl millet (cumbu or bajra) having chromosome number 2n = 20, 21. It possess more tillers and leaves than Napier and is more vigorous and higher in fodder yield and quality. Crude protein ranges from 8 to 11%.
  • Co. CN 4: This is yet another hybrid napier grass released by TNAU, Coimbatore during 2008. This hybrid is a cross between Cumbu Co.8 and Napier grass F.T.461. This gives 33 % higher green fodder yield than Co.3. Yield range is between 380-400 tons/ha. It produces more tillers with soft and juicy stem, free from pest and diseases and non-lodging. It can be cultivated throughout the year under irrigated conditions.
  • KKM-1 Cumbu Napier: This is a hybrid grass released during 2000 and developed from IP15507 X FD 429. It recorded an average green fodder yield of 288 tonnes per ha per year. The quality is good with high calcium, magnesium and phosphorus and very low oxalate content
  • Babala was the first hybrid developed in South Africa. Pusa Giant, NB21, NB37, IGFRI5, IGFRI7 and IGFRI10 (developed from Indian Grassland Research Institute, Jhansi) are superior hybrids developed in India. Co1, Co2, Co3, Co4 & KKM1 are also superior varieties released from Tamil Nadu Agricultural University. These varieties are suitable for growing throughout the year in all districts in Tamil Nadu.
  • Preparation of field
    • Plough with an iron plough two to three times to obtain good tilth.
  • Application of FYM
    • Apply and spread 25 t /FYM/ha of or compost every year on the unploughed field and incorporate the manure in the soil during ploughing.
  • Forming Ridges
    • Form ridges and furrows using a ridger, 6 m long and 50 cm apart and form irrigation channels across furrows.
  • Application of Fertilizers
    • Apply NPK fertilizers as per soil test recommendations as far as possible. If soil testing is not done, follow the blanket recommendations of 50: 50: 40 of kg NPK /ha.
    • Apply full dose of NPK basally before planting by opening furrow 5 cm deep on the side of the ridges and cover with soil.
    • Application of Azospirillum and Phosphobacterium along with 75% of recommended dose of N and P fertilizers enhanced the yield besides saving of 25% of fertilizer dose.
  • Planting
    • Irrigate through the furrows and plant one rooted slip/stem cutting per hole and at a depth of 3 to 5 cm on the side of the ridge, half the distance from the top of the ridge and the bottom.
    • Maintain a spacing of 50 cm in the row in the ridges which are 50 cm apart.
    • Seed rate: Hybrid Napier grass does not produce seeds and hence propagation is by means of rooted slips. 40,000 slips are required to plant one ha.
    • As a mixed crop, 3 rows of Cumbu Napier Hybrid and one row of Desmanthus can be raised to increase the nutrient value.
  • Water Management
    • Immediately after planting , give life irrigation on the third day and thereafter once in 10 days Sewage or waste water can also be used for irrigation.
  • Weed Management
    • Hand weeding is done whenever necessary.
    • First harvest is to be done on 75 to 80 days after planting and subsequent harvests at intervals of 45 days.
  • Top Dressing
    • After each harvest apply 100 kg N/ha (wherever Nitrate problem is more reduce the N application).


  • Quartering has to be done every year or whenever the clumps become unwieldy and large (each clump will form into big stools in two years. It is then split into four quarters and three of them are removed. This operation is known as quartering.
  • Wherever necessary to countermand the ill effects of oxalates in this grass, the following steps are suggested.
    • Feeding 5 kg of leguminous fodder per day per animal along with these grasses or
    • Providing calcium, bone meal or mineral mixture to the animal or
    • Giving daily half litre of supernatant clear lime water along with the drinking water or sprinkling this water on the feed to be given.
  • Cumbu - Napier grass can be intercropped with Velimasal at 3:1 ratio harvested together and fed to animals.
Last modified: Wednesday, 21 December 2011, 7:52 AM