Tagasaste / Tree Lucerne
(Chamaecytisus palmensis, formerly known as Cytisus
Kimseed Stocks Australian produced Tagasaste Seed
palmensis) is a fast growing, perennial, leguminous shrub or small tree,
adapted to temperate regions with winter rains and extended dry summers.
Tagasaste thrives on deep, infertile sandy soils (such as the on the
Swan Coastal Plain of Western Australia) and if heavily pruned will
become a multi-stemmed bushy shrub. The black seeds have an oily feel
and are in pods similar to pea pods. Also, its dense fibrous root system
does not appear to wilt even in the worst of droughts. Farmers
traditionally depended on Tagasaste for fodder during long dry seasons.
Similar to clovers, Tagasaste utilises soil bacteria to fix atmospheric
nitrogen, which results in the leaves containing 20 to 40% protein, with
no reported toxicity. Presently, Australian farmers are using the tree
in cut and carry systems, since grazing animals, pigs and poultry
readily consume its leaves.
Bacteria called Rhizobium live in
a symbiotic relationship with many legumes, including Tagasaste.
Advantageous to the plant, as it is able, once inoculated, to produce
its own nitrogen, from the soil air. The bacteria are stored in peat. It
should be stored in the fridge and used within 3 months. To use, moisten
the seed with a small amount of milk or water and stir in the inoculant
until seeds are coated. Do not inoculate the seed until you are ready to
sow it and do not leave the inoculated seed in the sun.
Kimseed can supply
inoculant, please ask for price details
Tagasaste is a hard coated seed,
and as such it is recommended that the seed be scarified before
planting. By nicking the seed coat and allowing water to permeate
germination increases significantly. Kimseed is able to offer a
scarifcation service using its especially designed scarifier. Please
notify us if you would like the seed scarified when placing your order.
The ultimate fodder crop! A
prostrate cultivar of regular tagasaste produced in Western Australia,
for more information please