Training Kit   No. 2.2
 

ESTABLISHING A MEDIC PASTURE

USING SEED

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Return to earlier group of photos No 2.1

Photos No 6 to 13         "What do you need?" 

  

Photo No. 7.

    You will need sheep or other livestock to graze the medic.

Try and achieve a rough balance between the number of sheep and the production of medic.

Too many sheep can lead to over-grazing.  

 

Photo No. 8.

    If you have too few sheep the pasture will be under grazed.

The weeds will grow and shade the medic.

If you plant enough medic pasture to achieve a rough balance you will find that grazing management is much easier.

 

Photo No. 9.

    You will need 15 kg of medic seed per hectare.

15 kg per hectare will establish a pasture with a good density of plants.
 

Photo No. 10

    There are many different varieties and cultivars of commercially available medic that are suited to the soils and rainfall of West Asia and North Africa.

 

Photo No. 11.

Select a mixture of two or three different medics suitable for the soil and rainfall on your farm with the assistance of your extension worker.

 

Photo No. 12

You need about 100 kg per hectare of triple phosphate for your medic pasture to grow strongly and fast.

Photo No. 13.

    You must not use nitrogen fertiliser on medic.

Medic does not need nitrogen.

Adding nitrogen fertiliser will encourage the weeds to grow and shade the medic.

Notice all the weeds in this field of medic.
 

Continue to next group of photos No 2.3
 

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION AND LINKS
 

Photo No. 7 & 8

    Medic must be grazed in the first season. Hay production from medic in the early years is not recommended. Sheep or other livestock must be available to graze the medic pasture. The area of medic should be planned in relation to the number of sheep. If a rough balance is planned before the medic is sown grazing management will be easy. If there are too many sheep overgrazing is a danger. If there are too few the pasture will be under grazed and become dominated by weeds. Grazing management is still necessary and will be described later but starting with a rough balance makes the task much easier.

    A chapter on Planning the Area of Medic provides full details of a Grazing Day budget.

Photo No. 9.

    A more detailed discussion on seeding rates is provided in Establishment of medic pastures using seed within the Farmers' Guide.
 

Photo No. 10 & 11.

    Information on the selection of suitable cultivars for the cereal zone in provided in What cultivar for the cereal zone?

For other zones:

    What cultivar for the marginal zone?

    What cultivar for the rangeland?

    What cultivar for the high rainfall zone?
 

Photo No. 12.

    More on fertilisers is provided in Making sense of fertiliser.
 

Photo No 13.

    It may seem obvious that nitrogen fertiliser provides no benefits for medic and only encourages the growth of weed competition.

Our work in Tunisia showed that it is important to reinforce the point. In one survey we found a substantial number of farmers had used nitrogen and phosphate mixtures with their medic.