University of Arizona a dot Cooperative Extension

Alfalfa Report
Yuma County, Arizona
September 8, 2003

Yuma County Office
2200 W. 28th Street, Ste. 102
Yuma, AZ 85364
(928) 726-3904
(928) 726-8472 FAX

Production Update:

Berstreem clover: Berstreem clover (Trifolium alexandrinum L.) (Detour signpicture) (also called Egyptian clover) is an annual forage that has been used for many years in the Middle East, the Mediterranean region, and India and was introduced into Arizona in the early 1900's. Berseem clover should be planted in early October and about five cuttings of 1 dry ton per acre each can be obtained by May or June before the plant dies. Berseem clover is similar in quality to alfalfa. Berseem clover is best suited to green chopping or grazing since the stems do not dry easily enough for hay production and the crop is too high in moisture and low in carbohydrates for silage production. Berseem clover is tolerant of low temperatures and produces more growth in the winter and spring than alfalfa and other clovers.

Insect Management: Thrips do not normally cause economically important damage to alfalfa. Several species of thrips may be found in alfalfa including: Western flower thrips (picture), Bean thrips (Caliothrips fasciatus), Onion thrips, Sixspotted thrips (Detour signpicture), and Caliothrips phaseoli. Feeding injury is caused when thrips rasp the leaf surface with special mouthparts and then suck up the plant juices. Such feeding causes the surface of the leaf to become whitened or silvery and somewhat flecked or stippled in appearance. Feeding, particularly near the leaf mid-rib, causes curling and distortion of the leaves; they often have a cup-like or puckered appearance. There is no evidence that thrips cause yield or quality loss in alfalfa. During the fall of 2001 and 2002, Caliothrips phaseoli numbers were very high in seedling and mature stands. Some seedling stands required treatment due to the combined stress of herbicide treatments, hot weather, and high thrips numbers.

Weed Control: Established sandbur, both field (picture) and southern, cannot be selectively controlled in Alfalfa. A recently completed test contained all of the postemergence grass herbicides including Poast, Select, Raptor, Fusilade, Assure and Pursuit. None of these treatments were effective. Poast, Select and Raptor have sandbur on the label but these may be effective on only seedling sandbur at the earliest growth stages and not on plants that already contain burs.

Market Summary
Off grade
Past 2 Weeks (Aug 26 - Sept 8, 2003)
Last Year (Aug 26 - Sept 8, 2002)


10 Year Summary (Aug. 26 - Sept 8, 1994-2003):

10-year summary 8-26 to 9-8, 1994 - 2003

Full Disclaimers

Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, James A. Christenson, Director Cooperative Extension, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, The University of Arizona.

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Information provided by:
Barry Tickes, Extension Agent, Yuma County
Michael Ottman, Agronomy Specialist
College of Agriculture, The University of Arizona.
Eric Natwick, UCCE Imperial County - Farm Advisor
University of California, Davis, CA.

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