|Contributor||SARDI Minnipa Agricultural Centre|
Site 14, Minnipa Agricultural Centre, SA
Legume pastures have been pivotal to sustainable agricultural development in southern Australia. They provide highly nutritious feed for livestock, act as a disease break for many cereal root pathogens, improve fertility through nitrogen (N) fixation and mixed farming reduces economic risk. Despite these benefits, pasture renovation rates remain low and there is opportunity to improve the quality of the pasture base on many low to medium rainfall mixed farms across southern Australia. A diverse range of pasture legume cultivars are currently available to growers and new material is being developed. Some of these legumes, such as the annual medics, are well adapted to alkaline soils and have high levels of hard seed, which allow them to self-regenerate from
soil seed reserves after cropping (ley farming system). Other legume cultivars and species are available and being developed that
offer improved seed harvestability, are claimed to be better suited to establishment when dry sown and/or provide better nutrition for
livestock. Regional evaluation is being undertaken to determine if they are productive and able to persist in drier areas (<400 mm
annual rainfall) and on Mallee soil types common to the mixed farming zone of southern Australia.
This is a component of a five year Rural Research and Development for Profit funded project supported by GRDC, MLA and AWI;
and involving Murdoch University, CSIRO, SARDI, Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development; Charles Sturt University and grower groups.
• This trial aims to assess a diverse range of annual pasture legumes in order to determine whether there are more productive and
persistent options for the drier areas (<400 mm) of the mixed farming zone of southern Australia.
• The annual medics were the most productive pasture legume producing > 2 t/ha DM and setting > 500 kg/ha of seed. A new Tetraploid Barrel medic was the most productive.
• Astragalus was the most promising alternative legume and warrants further evaluation.
|Lead research organisation||N/A|
|Host research organisation||N/A|
|Trial funding source||AWI RnD4Profit-16-03-101|
|Trial funding source||GRDC RnD4Profit-16-03-101|
|Trial funding source||MLA RnD4Profit-16-03-101|
|Trial funding source||Department of Agriculture RnD4Profit-16-03-101|
This project is supported by funding from the Australian Government Department of Agriculture as part of its Rural R&D for Profit
|Other trial partners||Not specified|
|Sow date||16 May 2018 16 May 2019|
|Harvest date||Not specified|
|Plot size||5m x 1.5m|
|Plot randomisation||Random blocks|
SILO weather estimates sourced from https://www.longpaddock.qld.gov.au/silo/
Jeffrey, S.J., Carter, J.O., Moodie, K.B. and Beswick, A.R. (2001). Using spatial interpolation to construct a comprehensive archive of Australian climate data , Environmental Modelling and Software, Vol 16/4, pp 309-330. DOI: 10.1016/S1364-8152(01)00008-1.