Management is important - avoid allowing Mekong becoming too rank
Mekong Briz antha brachiaria provides up to 8/9 months of vegetative growth due to late flowering/only flowering once a year. It is tolerant of short-term flooding and waterlogging as well as salinity and acidic soils. Featuring a tall growth habit, Mekong can provide quality hay and dry matter production.
Mekong is highly palatable and persistent under heavy grazing during the wet season and can, provide good growth through the dry season.
Mekong brachiaria is a highly adaptable plant growing on a wide range of soils (well drained – heavy) with a pH of 4–8. Mekong can tolerate high aluminium concentrations found on soils below pH 5.5. It can survive on soils of low fertility but requires medium to high soil fertility to be productive and perform.
Mekong is suited to the humid and sub-humid tropics with 1500 – 3,500 mm average annual rainfall but will also grow in the more arid regions of the tropics with rainfall down to 500mm. Mekong can withstand dry periods of 3–6 months, during which the leaf may remain green when other tropical species have browned off. It can withstand short term flooding (<1 month).
Mekong brachiaria pasture seed should be broadcast at 3–5 kg/ha within a mixed pasture or at 8-10kg/ha as a sole pasture. Sow pasture seed into a well worked firm seedbed and then lightly roll to improve seed to soil contact. Prior to planting a well-rounded basal fertiliser should be applied according to soil test recommendations. Once established Mekong is very responsive to nitrogen fertiliser with fast growth rates.
For pasture seed sowing rates specific to your farming needs, contact your local PGG Wrightson Seeds Sales Agronomist here.
Mekong’s dry matter yields range from 8-20 tDM/ha/year and it has good persistence if fertilised well. Typical nutritive values are dependent on the fertility of the soil, fertiliser application, and regrowth age. Crude protein can range from 7–16% and digestibility 51–75%. Digestibility of regrowth can decline from 75% at 2 weeks to 55% at 12 weeks.
Mekong performs better under intensive grazing practices due to its prolific growth characteristics. It can support high stocking rates and when grazed well, Mekong is well accepted by stock.
When sown on medium fertility soils, Mekong brachiaria can support cattle liveweight gains of 400–500 kg/ha/yr at stocking rates of 2.5 steers/ha in the wet season and 1.5 in the dry season. When grown with legumes Mekong could potentially be stocked at 3 animals/ha where LWG’s of 540–840 kg/ha have been recorded.
The Envirogro seed treatment process gives PGG Wrightson Seeds tropical and subtropical seed varieties a better start. Envirogro is a tailored process, that cleans, treats, and improves the bare seed count and purity of tropical, subtropical grasses and legumes.
If the species requires, the bare seed is taken through a process of de-hulling leaving only the caryopses, before being coated and cleaned again to achieve high purity.
Minimum 500mm rainfall per annum unless irrigated