Characterisation of an Italian wild sulla (Hedysarum coronarium L.)

Piccaglia, R.; Gaspari, F.; Vecchiettini, M.

Optimal forage systems for animal production and the environment Proceedings of the 12th Symposium of the European Grassland Federation, Pleven, Bulgaria, 26-28 May 2003: 441-444


Accession: 004068835

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A wild sulla grown in northern Italy was harvested at three development stages and evaluated on the basis of its chemical composition and its suitability for ensiling. Changes in phenolics and lignin composition were also determined by HPLC and PY/GC/MS because of their relationship to forage digestibility. Wild sulla was characterised by high protein and sugar content (213-152 g kg-1 and 77-56 g kg-1 of dry matter respectively) but also by a high percentage of lignin (171-184 g kg-1 of dry matter). A decrease of protein and sugar content was observed with advancing maturity. A good ensiling process was obtained only with forage reaching, after wilting, a dry matter value of about 350 g kg-1. A change in the relative ratios of lignin constituents, indicated by an increase of guaiacyl (G) and syringyl (S) units and a corresponding decrease of the p-hydroxyphenyl (H) ones, were found during sulla growth.