The potential for tedera (Bituminaria bituminosa var. albomarginata) in mixed farming systems

Phil Ward1, Chao Chen1, Andrew Smith2,3, David Ferris4, Daniel Real5, Christiaan Valentine4, Rick Llewellyn2

1 CSIRO Agriculture and Food, Private Bag No 5, Wembley, WA, 6913,

2 CSIRO Agriculture and Food, Waite Campus, SA, 5064

3Current address: Faculty of Veterinary & Agricultural Sciences, The University of Melbourne, Vic, 3010)

4 Department of Agriculture and Food WA, PO Box 483, Northam, WA, 6401

5 Department of Agriculture and Food, Western Australia, South Perth, WA 6151, Australia.


Tedera (Bituminaria bituminosa var albomarginata) is a perennial legume herb showing promise for inclusion in mixed farming systems of Australia. In this research we compared two tedera lines with lucerne and an annual legume pasture at two sites in southern Australia, and developed an APSIM module to simulate tedera growth. Simulated tedera production was about one third that of lucerne in both wet and dry years. Tedera was also not as effective as lucerne, but more effective than sub clover, in extracting subsoil water. However, one of the tedera lines appeared to be particularly effective in extracting soil P, suggesting that (a) there is variation within tedera germplasm for P efficiency, and (b) that some tedera lines might be well suited to soils of low P status.


The Australian Society of Agronomy is the professional body for agronomists in Australia. It has approximately 500 active members drawn from government, universities, research organisations and the private sector.

Photo Credits

David Marland Photography Southern Farming Systems Agriculture Victoria

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