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Lucerne (Medicago sativa)

Ref: LUCE

Lucerne is a very popular plant in the US, used in the UK primarily for silage and hay. Lucerne is also known as Alfalfa when sown as hay to the equine market. It is a high protein nitrogen fixing legume which thrives on free draining, non-acidic soil and requires no fertiliser. The selection of the correct Lucerne variety is important due to winter dormancy and resistance against Verticillium wilt, a disease which is soil-borne and must be avoided if lucerne is to be grown regularly. Sow with a small seeds drill or broadcast. Lucerne can be used as part of your greening measures, as a 'pasture legume' or a 'nitrogen fixing crop' option.Lucerne requires a particular bacteria (rhizobium) to be present in the soil for it to nodulate successfully. Nodules on the roots allow the plants to fix nitrogen and develop correctly.

Persistence (0-10 Years)
               
Yield (0-20 T DM/Ha)
                                   
Grazing Suitability (1-5)
     
Cutting Suitability (1-5)
     

Units AcHaKg

£8.95 / Kg

Sowing rate: 8.0kg/acre (20.0kg/ha)

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Companion Grass Option (0.37 Kg) £2.97/Kg
More InfoWe recommend the use of a non-competitive grass mixture to be sown with sainfoin and lucerne. The grass fills the base of the crop, increasing yield and soluble sugars to improve silage fermentation and ground cover if being grazed. The grass seed element should be surface sown and rolled in.
Culture (1 Pack) £10.00/Kg
More InfoCulture provides the correct type of bacteria to initiate nodulation for Lucerne & Sweet clover. This simple process is done on the day of sowing. This is considered essential if lucerne/sweet clover has not been grown previously, and is advised if there has been a break since it was last grown. It is organically certified and can be used on conventional and organic farms.
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Legume

Lucerne

Also known as alfalfa in the states, lucerne benefits animal health and soil fertility. It is a high protein forage crop which is usually grown on its own and is very good on drought-prone soils. It establishes relatively slowly, producing significantly more biomass in the second and third years. Lucerne should only be grown on free-draining, alkaline soil. Lucerne requires the correct strain of rhizobia (known as an inoculant) to efficiently fix atmospheric nitrogen and get the most growth.

Lucerne Species Guide  Buy Lucerne Straight