Three cultivars of Stylosanthes guyanensis, under two management regimes, were assessed for yield, quality, palatability and persistence under grazing. During the dry season progressive leaf abscission resulted in unpalatable bare stem, but both leafy stem and fallen leaf remained palatable. Between May and September there was a decline in crude protein (from 16 to 11%), phosphorus (0.22 to 0.18%) and potassium (2.3 to 1.7%), but not in digestibility (average 53%). Partial rather than total accumulation of wet season growth ensured less trampling damage, hence better persistence. Cultivar ranking for persistence and leaf yield was Schofield, Cook, Endeavour, although Cook was initially the most productive.