The best napier variety

Is Pakchong-1 Napier better than ordinary Napier-the truth!

Fodder should make at least 65% of the total ration fed to dairy cows for optimal milk production. The remaining are clean water, mineral salts and concentrates.

The common fodder for most dairy farmers is Napier grass.

Napier grass is a perennial grass preferred by farmers for its faster growth, wide range adaptation, high biomass productivity, and deep root system that helps it survive in drought conditions.

With the introduction of Pakchong-1 Napier grass, Farmers are now moving away from the ordinary Napier with the aim of increased milk.

What is Pakchong 1 grass?

Pakchong-1 originated from Thailand as a hybrid Napier grass with high crude protein, dry matter and good leaf stem ratio.

In Kenya, Pakchong-1 was introduced in the early 2000 and since then, most farmers have replaced the ordinary Napier with Pakchong-1, commonly known as super Napier.

Lack of information on planting, management and how to differentiate it from the ordinary Napier has costed farmers huge amounts of money.

Most of the Napier cuttings sold are not Pakchong-1 and end up dying after planting.

Importance of Pakchong-1 Napier?

Pakchong-1 is known for its faster growth rate with high forage yield, high crude protein concentration (16-18%), a wide range of adaptations and ability to be harvested for up to 8 years.

Supper Napier cutting
Super Napier cutting

Can Pakchong-1 Napier out-compete the ordinary Napier grass in terms of forage yield, quality and growth characteristics?

The fact that forage crops are highly area, location and season specific proves that the quality of Napier produced in different regions cannot be the same regardless of the variety.

According to past research, the amount of crude protein in Napier grass varies with the level of nitrogen in the soil, cutting intervals and length.

Is Pakchong-1 super Napier better than ordinary Napier?

What these two pieces of evidence tell us is that;

  • You cannot rely on nutritional data analysis for Pakchong-1 in one region for another region.
  • You can manage to have a superior ordinary Napier grass than Pakchong-1 by varying optimal cutting intervals and soil fertility.

Optimal cutting interval means cutting your Napier when it has high leaf dry matter DM, acceptable crude protein concentration and good leaf: stem ratio.

To attain high crude protein like that of Pakchong-1, farmers can adopt short-cutting intervals of less than 9 weeks when the leaf: stem ratio is high.

Adding a significant amount of manure to Napier farm can also raise the level of nitrogen and subsequently the amount of crude protein in harvested Napier.

Though Pakchong-1 has high crude protein, if planted on infertile soils with the wrong cutting interval, the result is low-quality Napier grass.

Can feeding Pakchong-1 Napier to dairy cows alone increase milk production? Definitely no.


A complete butternuts farming guide

We can comfortably conclude that Pakchong-1 Napier is not that superior to ordinary Napier grass in terms of increasing milk production.


Farmers should therefore focus on harvesting their ordinary Napier at the right height when crude protein is at optimal.

Other proven fodders that increase milk production are maize silage, sunflower silage, sorghum, millet or a combination of all.

About Post Author

One response to “Is Pakchong-1 Napier better than ordinary Napier-the truth!”

  1. twistedchildturnsmadmonk Avatar

    The growth rates for super pakchong is way better than ordinary napier Assuming you know what you are doing, proper fertilization and all super pakchong also has higher protein and nutrients compared to that of ordinary napier. So planted properly pakchong will definitely give a higher yield compared to ordinary napier, this means you can increase herd size for a given area and that means you end up with more milking cows and as such more milk.

Leave a Reply

Recent Posts


Social Media


the best agricultural website

Discover more from Agricultural solution center

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading