Chicory in meadow
« Cichorium intybus L. » chicory is a biennial plant belonging to the Asteraceae family. This upright plant, resistant to freezing, is cultivated in several regions in Europe, but is also more and more present in the United States, in India and in Australia.
In the case of chicory cultivation in meadows as forage, the plant is active during about 4 years. It represents thus an investment on a several years’ period.
The chicory leaves cultivation in meadows gives significant advantages:
- the chicory leaf contains a bitter substance: the sesquiterpene lactone. This lactone is present in the leaf at 0,26% on D.M. and is well known for its de-worming effect, resulting in a decrease in parasites, and more specifically in the number of eggs (larvae) in the intestines;
- the chicory leaf grows very well and brings a high-nutritional value to the feed intake. The chicory roots are deeper than grass roots and hence are able to pump water deeper in the ground. The leaves are more resistant during the summer. The upright shape of the leaves does not obstruct the grass or surrounding plants, and then provides a better nutritional income;
- chicory leaf is better assimilated than ray-grass, and the feed consumption can be increased because chicory leaf is well accepted;
- chicory leaf brings more varied nutrients than grass and makes the animal’s health better. It improves the animal’s growth thanks to a better resistance to worm infection. Chicory leaf also brings high proportions of:
- unsaturated fatty acids omega-3;
- a significant minerals’ content: Fe, Zn and Ca;.
- a high protein rate together with an interesting amino-acid profile: ratio Meth./Lysine.
Variety: industrial chicory
The emergence percentage of this variety is min. 85%.
|Number of seeds pro kg:||50000 units|
|Sowing in meadow:||1 to 2,5kg|
|Sowing period:||in the spring: end March or April,
or in the autumn: September/begin October
|Depth:||0,5cm to max. 1cm|
To make sure the root is well anchored in the ground, it is recommended not to let the animals graze during an 8 weeks’ period.
Table 1 – Nutritional value on dry matter (8 weeks’ old chicory leaves, samples dated May and August 2008)
|Young grass||Chicory leaves:
composition of fat content
|- Dry matter:||11%||16%||FAME|
|- Composition based on D.M.:||C14:0||g/kg||0,32||1,02%|
|Carbohydrates and/or starch||g/kg||82||150||C18:2 LA||g/kg||7,10||22,36%|
|FOS||g/kg||615||612||Amino-acids||Chic. leaves||Young grass|
|Nutritional value horse||kcal/kg||3159||3237||Arginine||g/kg||9,25||7,05|
Table 2 – Analysis on minerals: chicory leaves and English grass (« perennial ryegrass »)
according to literature
|Analysis 06/2008||English grass
(« Perennial ryegrass »)