Drop tube irrigated lucerne seed, herbage yield and plant persistence evaluation


Lucerne Australia (LA) is the peak industry body representing all aspects of the lucerne seed industry within Australia. Part of LA’s role, as pointed out in our mission is to become an integral part of the information distribution and research extension networks. LA already has one trial up and running that measures and compares the seed and herbage yielding performance of various public and Plant Breeders Rights (PBR) lucerne varieties under a border check irrigation system. With significant areas of Australia’s lucerne seed production receiving up to a 50% reduction in water license, water is becoming far more valuable in recent times. This has seen a shift away from border check irrigation and towards more efficient practices such as drop tube centre pivot irrigation systems. The proposed trial will obtain and compare lucerne herbage and seed yield data using the current best practice system of drop tube irrigation. The aim of the project is to determine which Lucerne varieties will optimise seed and herbage yield under a drop tube centre pivot irrigation system, therefore increasing the return per mega litre of water.


Pasture Seeds

Research Organisation

Lucerne Australia Inc.

Objective Summary

To identify varieties of lucerne that are capable of optimising production, both seed and herbage within a given irrigation schedule with the aim of increasing net returns per mega litre of water pumped. To optimise seed production for the Australian lucerne seed industry in order to achieve higher net returns per hectare. To measure and compare the seed and herbage yielding performance of new and existing commercial lucerne varieties. To measure and compare the seed and herbage yielding performance of experimental varieties of lucerne against current commercial varieties in order to identify and fast track superior genetics to the commercial market. To conduct the proposed trial within a drop tube centre pivot irrigation system with current best district practices using the knowledge of specialised agronomists, growers and research organisations. Annual plant persistence evaluation of different winter activity lucerne groups.

Project Code


Project Stage


Project Start Date

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Project Completion Date

Monday, June 15, 2015

Journal Articles From Project

Not Available

National Priority

Frontier technologies for building and transforming Australian industries

National Priority

Advanced Technology

National Priority

PSE-Production and processing efficiency and profitability