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Medic Overview
Seed Distributors - Science based pasture®
Medic

“A vigorous medic pasture of about 8 tonnes per hectare can produce up to 200 kg/ha of nitrogen in one year, equivalent to 400kg of urea.”

Medics are self-regenerating annual clovers that grow in autumn, winter and spring above 250 mm rainfall.

They are best suited to crop rotations on neutral to alkaline soils. Forage produced by annual Medics is high in protein for the grazing animal. Even the dry seed pods on the ground over summer provide a protein feed for grazing animals to maintain wool and meat growth. A vigorous Medic pasture of about 8 tonnes per hectare can produce up to 200 kg/ha of nitrogen in one year, equivalent to 400kg of urea.

This increases soil fertility, resulting in higher production of grain and fodder crops in the future. Annual Medics produce their own seed in a pod every season and if managed correctly seed pod numbers will build up in the soil. If established successfully and allowed to set adequate seed, annual Medics will regenerate year after year. This is due to their ability to produce hard seeds, a percentage of which break down each year. This mechanism also gives the annual Medics protection against drought and allows for good regeneration after 1-2 years of cropping.

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Features of Medics

  • They grow best on neutral to alkaline soils - soils with pH 6.0 to 8.5.
  • Legumes which are capable of regenerating each year without reseeding. Seed pods lie on top of the soil during summer. Seed in these pods germinate and produce a pasture in the following autumn after rains commence.
  • Soil fertility builders. Nitrogen is produced in the soil on the plant roots biologically. Roots and plant residues increase soil organic matter.
  • Forage produced is high in protein whether used for grazing animals or for forage or silage.
  • Drought tolerance and persistence over a wide range of soils and rainfall areas. Medics can germinate, grow, flower and set seed on as little as 80mm rainfall, spread over 2-3 months.
  • Annual Medics are sown with cereal crops in cropping rotations. However, they can be sown on their own for fodder production.
  • During summer the dried plant residues and seed pods on the ground provide high quality forage of protein content around 10%.
  • Can be sown dry into cereal crop stubble, prior to autumn rains.
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