Which Lucerne cultivar should I select?

The choice of cultivar depends upon the type of cultivar with specific reference to its dormancy rating.


A dormancy rating of 1 = strongly dormant during winter
A dormancy rating of >10 = winter active or non-dormant


In South Africa the following dormancy classes are most suitable:

  • 5 = semi-dormant

  • 6 & 7 = intermediate dormancy

  • 8 = non-dormant

  • 9 = strongly non-dormant

 

Dormant types have a shorter season, but stands have longer production lifetimes and are more suited for grazing. Resting periods are essential to maintain vigour and particularly the prevention of leaf loss during drought.

Non-dormant types have a longer season and more harvests per season, but stands have shorter production lifetimes. These cultivars are more suited for hay production and intensive production systems.