Track 1-10

Description

Lucerne (Medicago sativa L.) is the most widely grown perennial legume species in southern Australia. Within Australian farming systems it plays an important role in the provision of high-quality feed for livestock, nitrogen fixation and dewatering soils to reduce watertable recharge and dryland salinity (Cocks 2001). The majority of lucerne varieties have been developed for the areas with high rainfall or supplementary irrigation. The new challenge is to develop lucerne cultivars specifically for dryland mixed farming systems in temperate and mediterranean climate zones (Humphries and Auricht, 2001). Persistence in these environments and feeding value to sheep are critical selection traits. In this paper we compare nutritive traits of 35 commercial and experimental accessions of lucerne, sampled during the vegetative phase, and test the hypothesis that there will be significant differences between the accessions for in vitro dry matter digestibility (DMD), crude protein (CP), acid detergent fibre (ADF), neutral detergent fibre (NDF) and hemicellulose.

Share

COinS
 

Improving the Feeding Value of Dryland Lucerne in Australia

Lucerne (Medicago sativa L.) is the most widely grown perennial legume species in southern Australia. Within Australian farming systems it plays an important role in the provision of high-quality feed for livestock, nitrogen fixation and dewatering soils to reduce watertable recharge and dryland salinity (Cocks 2001). The majority of lucerne varieties have been developed for the areas with high rainfall or supplementary irrigation. The new challenge is to develop lucerne cultivars specifically for dryland mixed farming systems in temperate and mediterranean climate zones (Humphries and Auricht, 2001). Persistence in these environments and feeding value to sheep are critical selection traits. In this paper we compare nutritive traits of 35 commercial and experimental accessions of lucerne, sampled during the vegetative phase, and test the hypothesis that there will be significant differences between the accessions for in vitro dry matter digestibility (DMD), crude protein (CP), acid detergent fibre (ADF), neutral detergent fibre (NDF) and hemicellulose.