Tedera and Lebeckia: Perennial legume pastures to transform the sandplain

Commencement Date: October 2016

Completion Date: December 2017

Project Collaborators: WA Landskills Inc, Liebe Group, West Midlands Group, DAFWA and Murdoch University

Aim: This project aims to remediate infertile soils using perennial legume pasture and bring them back into production.

Background: The sandplain soils of the Northern Agricultural Region (NAR) would benefit greatly from the addition of a perennial pasture legume to the farming system. These soils are infertile, highly leaching, with a low carbon content and poor nutrient holding capacity and they are also prone to wind erosion and salinity.  An herbaceous legume pasture with the attributes of both perenniality and nitrogen fixing ability would provide multiple benefits:

  • Reduction of salinity in recharge-prone areas;
  • Increased protection from wind erosion; • Soil carbon and nitrogen accretion leading to enhanced soil health and nutrient management;
  • Adaptation to climate variability with the advantage of being able to capture and use rainfall whenever it falls;
  • Enhanced farming system viability due to the provision of green feed during the autumn feed gap.

The recent development by DAFWA and Murdoch University of the pastures Tedera and Lebeckia respectively, is an exciting development, and there is considerable farmer interest.  This project intends to provide NAR farmers with demonstrations of the pastures ahead of commercial release.

Site Locations: Lancelin (WA Landskills), Dandaragan (West Midlands Group) and Wubin (Liebe Group).

Funding: this project is being delivered by WA Landskills, Liebe Group, West Midlands Group, Murdock University and DAFWA and is supported by Northern Agricultural Catchments Council through funding from the Australian Governments National Landcare Programme.

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