Sabi Grass

Urochloa mosambicensis

  • Vigorous growing perennial once established with broad and light greenish leaves
  • Has a tendency to branch and form roots at lower nodes
  • Leaves are short and clustered at the nodes
  • It is persistent and spreads well after bush fires
  • Drought tolerance – fairly tolerant to dry season and spreads rapidly in response to wet weather

    Download a copy of the Urochola Sabi Grass factsheet.

     

    Species origin:

    Africa

     

    Description:

    Sabi Grass was introduced from Zimbabwe. It is not to be confused with African Liverseed grass Urochloa panicoides which is an annual.  Sabi is mainly grown for grazing and erosion control.  It has a characteristic decumbent growth habit and is a good seed producer with seed dormancy known to occur.

     

    Plant characteristics:

    • Growth habit – vigorous growing perennial once established with broad and light greenish leaves; plants are low growing tufted and stoloniferous and produce “creeping” growth habits.  It has a tendency to branch and form roots at lower nodes.  Leaves are short and clustered at the nodes.
    • It is persistent and spreads well after bush fires.
    • Drought tolerance – fairly tolerant to dry season and spreads rapidly in response to wet weather.
    • Uses – for grazing and erosion control; combines well with Stylosanthes (Seca, Verano, Amiga and Siran) and can withstand heavy grazing.
    • Adaptation- prefers tropical conditions with rainfall 500mm – 1200mm.  It has poor frost tolerance but readily recovers from frost damage.  Sabi may be more suited to the tropics.

     

    Seed Characteristics:

    Seeds are small and light which can often cause problems with harvesting and sowing.  Therefore, coated seeds facilitate seeding operations.  Bare seeds average 600,000seed/kg.

    Seed dormancy can also often be a problem but the Sabi grass sheds seeds in abundance to produce a good seed bank.

     

    Seeding Rate:

    • Bare seeds at 1-4kg/ha
    • Coated seeds at 2-8kg/ha
    Tropical Grass

    Any warm-season grass including species such as Paspalum, Rhodes grass, Digit grass, Panic grass, Kikuyu, Setaria etc.