More resistant lucerne on the way

By
Tuesday, 20 February, 2001


Salt, waterlogging and acid or aluminium soils could soon pose less of an impediment to lucerne growth, if a joint project between the State Government, the Australian Centre for International Research, and Chinese research institutions, proves successful.

Announcing the $938,000 project, Deputy Premier, Rob Kerin said that in addition to its role as one of Australia's main pasture legumes, lucerne has significant potential to assist in the alleviation of dryland salinity.

The project will see the South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI) cross salt and drought tolerant germplasm from Northern China with highly productive SA lines. Lucerne will then be screened at five sites in China and two sites in Australia, where environmental stresses currently limit production. New techniques for stress tolerance will also be developed in conjunction with the University of Tasmania.

Research will involve scientists from SARDI, the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences - Grasslands Research Institute, Beijing Forestry University, Shandong Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Gansu Grasslands Ecological Research Institute and Gansu Agriculture University.

Item provided courtesy of Science Industry

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