American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. Chiefly British Alfalfa.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A leguminous plant, Medicago sativa, a highly valuable pasture- and forage-plant, cultivated from ancient times, now widely spread in temperate climates. In the Uinted States it has been cultivated with especial success in southern California. It is greatly relished by animals, and under favorable conditions yields several crops in a year. It is also an improver of soil. In the western United States it is best-known under the Spanish name alfalfa, having been introduced into California from South America. Also called Spanish trefoil, French, Brazilian, or Chilian clover, and in British usage medic or purple medic.
- n. UK Alfalfa.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. (Bot.) See lucern, the plant.
- n. important European leguminous forage plant with trifoliate leaves and blue-violet flowers grown widely as a pasture and hay crop
- French luzerne ("lamp"), because of its bright seeds. (Wiktionary)
- French luzerne, from Provençal luzerno, glowworm (perhaps from its shiny seeds), from Latin lucerna, lamp, from lūcēre, to shine; see lucid. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“The grass called lucerne seems the best adapted to them, and you will find it grown on all ostrich farms for the special purpose of feeding the birds.”
“Of the legumes, alfalfa, also called lucerne, is the most popular crop; it's estimated that more than half of the hay harvested in the United States is alfalfa, or an alfalfa/grass mix.”
“I have increafed the flock proportionally to the improvement of the lucerne, which is not fo good the firft and fecond year as afterwards.”
Internet Archive: The farmer's guide in hiring and stocking farms. Containing an examination of many subjects of great importance both to the common husbandman, in hiring a farm; and to a gentleman on taking the whole or part of his estate into his own hands. Also, plans of farm-yards, and sections of the necessary buildings
“The great valleys of California do not produce much butter, and probably never will, though I am told that cows fed on alfalfa, which is a kind of lucerne, yield abundant and rich milk, and, when small and careful farming comes into fashion in this State, there is no reason why stall-fed cows should not yield butter, even in the San Joaquin or Sacramento valleys.”
“Tall grassland is scattered with hawkweed, ragwort, wild carrot and melilot flowers, along with clumps of bird's-foot trefoil, lucerne and goat's rue, and there are regular uprisings of brambles and wild rose, and sprawls of sallow and birch scrub.”
“Digging in ten bags of mushroom compost, organic chicken poo fertilzer, laying down the lucerne.”
“In the Registers kept at Cabul the rule is to set down in kind whatever part of the revenue is derived from the various sorts of corn, rice, cotton, pulse and seeds yielding oil which are usually cultivated and to enter in money the dues from all other produce as fruit, melon beds, straw, clover, lucerne, sheep, etc.”
“Almonds, clovers and lucerne aren't so good for them; too many pesticides are being used.”
“If these new settlers of yours are new to farming and have only 200ac to play with, may I suggest they block it into 4 x 50ac paddocks, sow 50ac oats (first late summer rain), 50ac wheat (early autumn sown dual purpose variety) and 50ac lucerne using a direct drill (early spring).”
“A road train loaded with swaying green bales of lucerne went by the other way.”
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