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Galega orientalis

 
Posts: 183
Location: Vashon WA, near Seattle and Tacoma
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I ran across this plant just the other day and it appears to be "just what the doctor ordered" for my operation. Imagine: a legume that fixes nitrogen, spreads by rhizomes, attracts bees, is rich in protein, can be cut for mulch, hay, and silage, and used for cattle, poultry and hog fodder. Oh and did I say it's hardy in Russia?

Horizon Herbs has seeds. Much of the literature indicates that a species-specific inoculant, rhizobium galegae, is needed, but Horizon states that this is present in most soils, and that they have had no problem germinating it.

More information is here, here, and here.

My question for the Permies is: Does anyone here have experience with galega orientalis. and if so, what is it? I have tried tagasaste, but frost wiped out a spring planting here in Zone 8. I have tried again with a fall planting, and am crossing my fingers, but if the tagasaste just won't cut it in this climate, galega orientalis might fill the bill. Thanks in advance for any info.
 
steward
Posts: 7926
Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
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I have no experience with it, but have read that it is perennial, and hardy to minus 40 degrees (C or F). It does not like poorly drained soils.
Pretty purple flowers, and the plant grows to about 4 feet.
 
John Polk
steward
Posts: 7926
Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
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Another good source of info is:
http://www.fao.org/ag/AGP/AGPC/doc/Gbase/DATA/Pf000480.HTM
 
Posts: 409
Location: Fairbanks, Alaska
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Ordered some seed; we'll see if it will survive up here. Looks promising.
 
                        
Posts: 40
Location: Berkeley,CA
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I haven't grown it myself, but it has been on my "want to get" list for a while now and I will be interested to see what people have to say about it. The common name of goats rue seems to be a little misleading since everything else with the "rue" or "bane" suffix tends to be toxic, but this seems to be quite the opposite. I have heard that it increases livestock milk production which is the main reason I've wanted to try it for so long. Can anyone confirm or deny that claim? Well, I guess I better order some before they run out because this is the first time I've seen a reputable company carry it. Thanks for the heads up
 
Victor Johanson
Posts: 409
Location: Fairbanks, Alaska
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It seems that both Galega orientalis and Galega officinalis are referred to as Goat's Rue, but only officinalis has alkaloids in sufficient quantities to act as a galactagogue.

I discovered that the university here did trials and determined that it didn't have much promise, but perhaps an appropriate microclimate and different growing techniques will make it feasible.
gift
 
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