AGRONOMIC PERFORMANCE OF ELEPHANT GRASS CULTIVARS UNDER IRRIGATION: A SYSTEMATIC REVIEW
ResumoElephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum Schum) is a grass species native to Africa, mainly used as forage resource. The search for adequate species and irrigation can be an alternative to increase yield and year-round availability of this forage in the Cerrado. Studies on irrigated elephant grass in the literature are still rather scarce. This review aimed to update information on the agronomic performance of elephant grass cultivars under irrigation. Methods: Articles referring to the topicirrigation of elephant grass were searched at the databases ScienceDirect, Scopus and Agris. In April 2018, two independent researchers searched at these databases considering all articles in English without restriction of year. At the three databases, a total of 357 articles were selected and downloaded, 316 of which were excluded and 41 were thoroughly read. At the end, three articles were considered in the systematic review. The best results were obtained in the period from June to October, when evapotranspiration and temperature were higher. In the second article, salinity caused reductions in vegetation index, leaf area, plant height and chlorophyll. In the last article of the review, the results were satisfactory with the use of irrigation, resulting in increased grass yield, generating greater availability of feed to cattle. With the present study it is possible to conclude that elephant grass can be a good alternative for cattle feed production, but some factors may limit its growth and development.