Janicka M.1 and Pawluśkiewicz B.2
1Department of Agronomy, Institute of Agriculture, Warsaw University of Life Sciences – SGGW, Nowoursynowska 159, 02-776 Warsaw, Poland; 2Department of Environmental Improvement, Institute of Environmental Engineering, Warsaw University of Life Sciences – SGGW, Nowoursynowska 159, 02-776 Warsaw, Poland
Non-destructive methods and tools, such as the Rising Plate Meter (RPM), are increasingly being used to measure the quantity and quality of grassland swards on European farms. The aim of our study was to assess herbage yield and its quality in periodically excessively wet meadows, on a low, multi-species sward with patches of protected plants, using non-destructive methods. The study was carried out in 2019-2021, in eleven extensive meadows located in the valley of Rządza river (central Poland). Two methods of yield evaluation were compared: (1) sward height and sward density measurement, and yield calculation according to Kostuch, and (2) the RPM. Sward botanical composition was identified by the Braun-Blanquet method and its quality using the fodder value score according to Filipek. We discuss the problems with precise measurements of sward height due to sward heterogeneity. Although non-destructive methods and tools can be used to assess the quantity and quality of yields in extensive meadows of high nature value, use of the RPM needs further calibration.
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