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Evaluation of yellow serradella accessions in southern Victoria

S.G. Clark1 and L.J. Hamilton2

1 Department of Agriculture, Pastoral Research Institute, Hamilton Vic. 3300
Department of Agriculture, Bairnsdale, Vic. 3875

Yellow serradella (Ornithopus compressus) is an annual legume with potential for Victoria's deep acid sands (1). Two cultivars are available. Pitman, a naturalised ecotype from the South west of Western Australia is productive in spring but makes little growth in winter. Uniserra, an earlier maturing cultivar is not productive. Approximately 400 lines have recently been screened by Dr. J.S. Gladstones of the Western Australian Department of Agriculture and distributed for testing. In Victoria 77 lines were sown in 1982 at Dartmoor and Bairnsdale.


Seed was inoculated and sown in 1-2 m ungrazed rows with two replicates at each site. Fertilizer at sowing was 300 kg/ha of 2 and 1 super potash and 100 kg/ha of super + Cu (0.5%), Zn (0.5%), Co (0.015%) and Mo (0.015%). Fertiliser in year 2 was 100 kg/ha super potash 2 and 1 and 100 kg/ha super + Mo (0.015%). Rows were rated for yield during 1982 and 1983. Seedling density was measured and the date at which =50% of plants were flowering was recorded.

Results and Discussion

All lines established well; most regenerated in 1983. When subjected to analysis of variance, linen/ear interactions were not significant (P<0.05) so results, pooled over years, are given for the cultivars and better lines (Table 1).

Table 1. Dry matter yield ratings (mean for 1982 and 1983) for selected lines

In winter and spring, at both sites, Uniserra was less productive than at least one of the lines of similar flowering time. Similarly, at both sites, at least one line was more productive than Pitman in winter and at least as productive as Pitman in spring. These lines vary considerably in pod segmentation. This may have implications for seed yield and grazing escape. Examination of promising lines as grazed swards will precede future recommendations.

1. Clark, S.G. (1983). Dept. Agric. Vic., Tech. Report Series No. 83.

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