Lucerne, Purple Medick, Lusern (Afr.)
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Known as the “Queen of Forages,” alfalfa is the oldest and one of the most palatable and nutritious cultivated or domesticated crops. It is rich in protein, very digestible and high in vitamins and minerals. Alfalfa also has a very high yield potential making it a excellent perrenial cover crop.
Summer, Autumn, Spring
Harvest regularly throughout spring, summer and autumn. Do not cut alfalfa if it looks like rain - the shoots get a fungus that makes it poisonous and unusuable.
Sowing time is best in summer. Pre-soak the seed for 12 hours in warm water. Germination time is quick, easily 3 - 7 days; which make it an excellent seed for sprouting!
Divide the clumps and replant. Keep moist until settled in.
Attracts useful insects
Because of its large amount of nectar attracts many species of bees
Doesn’t like wet conditions, too much moisture can lead to mold growth.
South-central Asia. First cultivated in Persia (Ancient Iran).
Warm to hot
Full Sun, Partial Shade, Partial Sun
Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil PH preference
The seeds are the popular Alfalfa, the green lusern excellent in green smoothies and juices as mineral boost.
The high mineral content makes high nutrition value - it aids with digestion and absorbtion of other nutrients.
The Fabaceae(legume) family all add nutrient value to the soil, by fixing nutrients like Nitrogen in a more plant usuable format as ammonia.
Culinary, medicinal, soil conditioner
Alfalfa has few pest problems; the alfalfa weevil can cause serious damage and reduce yields. In addition, a stem nematode can infest and weaken stem buds.