Efficiency of Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.) Cultivation in the Ukrainian Forest-Steppe Zone and Development of Its New Lines

Svitlana O. Rakhmetovа1, Olena M. Vergun1, Maksym I. Kulyk2, Rostislav Y. Blume3, 4, Oleksandr P. Bondarchuk1, Yaroslav B. Blume3, Dzhamal B. Rakhmetov1, *
1 M.M. Gryshko National Botanical Garden, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, 1,Tymiryazevska Str., Kyiv, 02000, Ukraine
2 Poltava State Agrarian Academy, Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine, 1/3, Skovorody Str., Poltava, 36003, Ukraine
3 Institute of Food Biotechnology and Genomics, National Academy of Science of Ukraine, 2a, Osypovskoho Str., Kyiv, 04123, Ukraine
4 Educational and Scientific Centre “Institute of Biology and Medicine”, Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, 2, Academika Glushkova Ave., Kyiv, 03022, Ukraine

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© 2020 Rakhmetovа et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at Department of Cultural Flora, M.M. Gryshko National Botanical Garden, Natl. Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, 1, Tymiryazevska str., Kyiv, 02000, Ukraine; Tel. +38(050)365-19-30; E-mail:



Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.) is a promising C4-photosynthetising perennial grass and an important energy crop. It is resistant to drought, cold and winter frost, endures flooding and shows high performance at minimal energy consumption for cultivation.


The purpose of the work was to develop and introduce high-yielding genotypes of switchgrass and develop effective cultivation technologies for the Forest-Steppe zone of Ukraine. The objective of the study was to evaluate the introduction potential of switchgrass, to establish biologically productive parameters and energy values of different genotypes and the effectiveness of cultivation techniques in the specific geo-climatic zone of Ukraine. To achieve the objectives, a wide range of introductory, biological-morphological, breeding-biotechnological, and agronomic methods have been used.


The gene pool of P. virgatum was collected (33 accessions), ten of which have been investigated, including both introduced genotypes and newly developed breeding lines. The bio-morphological, ecological features, the biochemical composition of plants have been evaluated. The productivity of the above-ground biomass and seeds, as well as the energy value of plants, has been evaluated. High-performance forms with specified yield parameters, biomass sugars, total energy and biofuel output per unit area have been determined.


A new variety of P. virgatum (cv. Zoriane) has been introduced for cultivation. Among the accessions of newly developed genotypes, the most productive lines have been identified. New efficient technologies have been developed to increase the yield potential of switchgrass as a source of raw materials for biofuel production.

Keywords: Biofuel production, C4 Perennial grass, Cultivation, Energy crop, New genotypes, Switchgrass, Ukrainian Forest-Steppe.