Lucerne

Lucerne is commonly known as the king of forages.  Lucerne is an extremely valuable feed source with the ability to grow 12 months of the year depending on the winter activity of the variety.  Lucerne, with its deep root system, has the ability to stay green throughout the summer months, (acting as a fire break), provides quality green feed when moisture is limited, (when perennial grasses are dormant) and give graziers the ability to sell their stock when they want to.  With dormancies ranging from 3 – 10, there is a Lucerne variety to suit your needs.

Variety Coat Availability Winter Activity Sowing Rate Attributes

SARDI 10
Series 2

Agricote 10 8 – 25 Strong winter and good year round production. Aggressive seedling growth and improved resistance to disease and pests over the original SARDI 10.

L92

Goldstrike 9 8 – 25 Good seedling vigour. Dual purpose hay and grazing variety. Very fast regrowth after cutting or grazing.

Magna 995

Bare 9 6 – 20 American bred variety bred specifically for big hay tonnages. A specialist hay variety suited to irrigation. Massive year round growth.

Sceptre

Bare 9 6 – 20 Excellent winter production, ideal for hay production or grazing. Very persistent in dryland conditions for a winter active Lucerne and widely adaptable.

Flairdale

Bare 7 6 – 20 Direct selection from Cuf 101, HunterRiver and Wakefield to give a good persistent variety that offers value for money in a broad acre situation.

L71

Goldstrike 7 8 – 25 Variety suited to dryland grazing in 350-550mm rainfall areas. High disease and pest resistance. Can perform well under irrigation. High forage quality and good leaf retention.

SARDI 7 Series 2

Agricote 7 8 – 25 SARDI 7 series 2 is very leafy giving high quality feed and has a broad crown for greater persistence. The ideal all- round lucerne for Australian conditions. The result of more than 40 years of lucerne breeding in Australia by SARDI.

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Kickstart 7 8 – 25 Good reliable dryland option, Australian bred for Australian conditions.

GTL60

Goldstrike 6 8 – 25 Low and broad crown makes GTL60 a persistent variety, however will need to be rotationally grazed to achieve optimum persistence, high quality and productivity, dual purpose.

Aurora

Bare 6 6 – 20 Benchmark for persisting and producing on fragile soil types due to low crown. Improved varieties have been bred, but this variety still has a fit.

SARDi Grazer

Agricote 6 8 – 25 SARDI Grazer was developed by SARDI and GRDC for extreme grazing tolerance. Bred to withstand periods of set stocking that would see the demise of other lucernes. Ideal for cropping rotations where grazing management is limited and suits all classes of livestock.

Stamina GT5

Superstrike 5 8 – 25 Outstanding persistence and high yielding. Produces top quality hay and maintains green leaf colour exceptionally well. Great leaf to stem ratio.

SARDI 5

Agricote 5 8 – 25 Shows a lot more growth for a largely winter dormant type. Strong spring forage yields and can handle grazing pressure. Very persistant.

Q31

Goldstrike 3 6 – 20 Bred for premium quality hay/silage under irrigated systems. Superior leaf retention and the highest nutritive value. Very high yielding.

 

Sowing rates for Lucerne vary significantly because of the increased use of pre-coated seed.  Dryland stands of Lucerne should be sown at a minimum of 6kg/ha and up to a maximum of 20kg/ha for irrigated fine quality hay production.  We suggest slightly increasing the rates for coated seed varieties so you can be assured of getting similar plants per square meter established in your pasture.

Allowing Naracoorte Seeds to help select the appropriate lucerne variety to achieve a productive, persistent stand; ensuring varieties must suit the environment, the management system and markets.
Lucerne growers must consider:

  • the purpose of the stand (hay types are leafy with fine stems, grazing types have low crowns)
  • how long the stand is required (2–4 years for hay, 3–7 years for grazing)
  • pests and diseases that might be present
  • whether plant growth is required in winter
  • time of sowing
  • whether grazing tolerance is needed
  • special characteristics such as resistance to soil aluminium, manganese or salt levels
  • special customer requirements
  • market seed prices.
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