Panicum coloratum is an erect tufted perennial grass with tout stems. It grows to 40 – 150 cm high. Leaves are bluish green and long with variable lengths of 5 – 50cm. width vary between 4 and 14 cm depending on soil conditions and other ecological factors.
The grass is cross pollinated with some degree of apomixes.
Annual rainfall requirements is variable but the grass can survive well in 600 to 1200mm per year of rainfall. Rainfall must however be very well distributed such that plenty should occur during establishment and harvesting.
Ecotypes include solai type collected early in 1960’s. they are good seeders and easily establishes from seeds. Shallow planting is mandatory for better establishment.
Dry matter (DM) production depend on soil fertility, height of harvesting and frequency of harvesting. When about 100 – 150 cm the DM content is about 9 – 10 ton/ha/yr at 8 weeks harvesting interval.
Seeding rate is about 3 kg/ha on well prepared seedbed. Rough seedbed needs a higher seeding rate.