Drought & Heat ~ Lucerne Trees Bring Relief

The value of lucerne trees is that they keep your animals in good condition.

As the dry, hot summer burn the veld and grasses, and as grazing becomes more limited, our camped lucerne trees are a blessing and relief.

20160303_140753 Our Angus cattle spend the first few days eating the grasses and then move on to browse the lucerne trees. 20160303_140130Lucerne trees provide nitrogen-fixing in the soils which enhance the grasses growth, as well as providing shade and wind protection to keep soil moisture up after rains or irrigation.  20160303_140159While normal lucerne fields are our “food bank” where we cut, bale and store lucerne, the lucerne trees are an indispensable part of our grazing rotations.  20160303_140826It is never too late to start planting lucerne trees!

 

 

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2 thoughts on “Drought & Heat ~ Lucerne Trees Bring Relief

  1. Hi Nadene,
    Your cattle and Lucerne trees look very nice!
    How many grazing days can the trees cope with before you rotate to a new camp and how many times per year can you graze the trees? Do you have irrigation on the trees and how often do they need water?
    Best regards,
    Chris

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    • @Chris Herselman, We find our camps with lucerne trees carrying capacity has doubled once the lucerne trees are matured and have been pruned to remain 1 meter high. When regualrly irrigated, the camp needs about 50 – 60 days recovery time before being grazed again. Trees need regular irrigation, especially in the dry season while trees are being established. After 2 years they cope with out regualry watering, but will not do as well as those trees with irrigation.

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