Evaluation of range browse shrubs under arid Mediterranean climate conditions

Fernando Squella N.1, Raúl Meneses R.2 y Talía Gutiérrez V.3

At the Subestación Experimental Los Vilos (INIA; lat. 31º 54'; long. 71º 29’W), an introduction nursery with Atriplex, Galenia, Acacia, Maireana, Medicago, Enchylaena, Rhagodia, Artemisia, Tetragonia and Simmondsia species was established, in August 1978, and evaluated during 1979,1980 and 1981. The soil was a terrace, originated from marine sediments. Plants grown in a glasshouse were transplanted to the field in a completely randomized design, with three replications. The species were evaluated considering sprounting, growth, forage yield and chemical analysis. Five months after planting, ah the species liad over 75% sprouting; but at 19 and 30 months, most had lost some plants, mainly dueto the harvesting of biomass. Atriplex giauca, Atriplex semibaccata, Galenia secunda, A triplex canescens, Atriplex halimus and Artemisia herba-alba showed the highest sprouting. At 30 months, Atriplex halimus (L.V.), Atriplex nummularia and Maireana brevifolia were the highest. The maximum diameter was obtained by Galenia secunda and Atriplex hailmus (LV.). The best yields were shown by Galenia secunda, Atriplex nummularia and Atriplex semibaccata. When the shrubs were ready for animal utilization, Maireana triptera, Tetragonia arbuscula and Maireana brevifolia showed the highest bruto protein contents (12.73 to 15.89%). Prominent in crude fi ber were Rhagodia nutans, Maireana tomentosa and Enchylaena tomentosa. All the species presented a high ash content, a low phosphorus content and an adequate calcium level.

1 Estación Experimental La Platina (INIA), Casilla 5427, Santiago, Chile.
2 Subestación Experimental Los Vilos (INIA), Casilla 40, Los Vilos, Chile.
3 Estación Experimental La Platina (INIA); actualmente: Instituto Profesional de Santiago, San Ignacio 175, Santiago, Chile.