Product Used: Cavalier Spineless Burr Medic
Medic pasture has proved to be an excellent longterm option in rotation with crops on the property of Dean Thomas at Maitland in South Australia. Mr Thomas said he used medics through much of the property because they suited the alkaline soil type and also provided good grazing options. Last season, two paddocks of 60 hectares in total were sown to a mix of different medic varieties. The blend consisted of 40 percent Goldstrike Paraponto medic, 30 percent Goldstrike Caliph barrel medic and 30 percent Goldstrike Cavalier spineless burr medic. Mr Thomas said he liked trying new varieties and the blend of medics suited the different seasonal conditions that could occur in any given year.
e said last season under wet conditions some of the varieties adapted to the conditions better than others. The medic was sown into paddocks that had contained wheat the previous year and are now being used as a longer-term pasture option. “We will still crop every other year,” Mr Thomas said. A cereal crop will be direct-drilled into the paddock next season and then it will once again be used as a medic pasture paddock the following year. “If you are only cropping every other year you can go on indefinitely,” he said. Last year’s medic crop was sown before the autumn break in April with one paddock planted at 5 kilograms per hectare and the second paddock thicker at between seven and eight kilograms per hectare.
attle had access to both areas and other paddocks soon after planting and grazed the medic throughout the year. Mr Thomas said the seed set from the medic was very good and would set it up well to regenerate and produce quality feed in future years. He said the rotation of medic and cereals had been utilised on the property for many years and worked really well. Last season, Targa herbicide was sprayed early for grass weed control and RoundUp was also used at a very low rate to spray-top the paddocks late in the season. Fertiliser is applied during the cropping phase of the rotation and the cereal also benefits from the nitrogen fixed by the medic plants. “When you have good medic you can really see the difference,” Mr Thomas said. “The nitrogen for the next crop is a bonus.”
strong>Dean Thomas of Maitland, South Australia