The Australian Medicago Genetic Resource Centre (AMGRC) has been operating under this name since 1982 when it was designated by Australian Agriculture Council as one of the network of eight Australian Plant Genetic Resource Centres. However, its history begins well before this as the acquisition, evaluation, characterisation, documentation, storage and maintenance of a pasture plant genetic resources collection has been a major ongoing function of the South Australian Government since the early 1960's.
The AMGRC maintains the World's largest collection of annual and perennial Medicago accessions with over 25 500 different accessions. In addition, the collection includes over 4500 lines of Trifolium and over 7500 lines of a range of other lesser-known pasture legume genera including Hedysarum, Lotus, Astragalus, Trigonella, Tetragonolobus and Onobrychis.
The collection is continuing to increase in its diversity and scope as researchers seek new species to meet environmental constraints and changing farming systems. New accessions are collected from a growing number of regions at a rate of 1340 lines a year (3 year average). Due to the unique nature of the germplasm, the AMGRC has an important national and international role in the conservation and distribution of temperate pasture legume germplasm and is a repository of irreplaceable genetic material. The material assembled is predominantly of genera and species adapted to alkaline and saline soils of Mediterranean origin and serves to underpin National and International pasture research and commercial interests.
Seed is available at cost. If you would like to acquire germplasm, passport data, characterisation data or more information about the operation of the Genetic Resource Centre, please contact Steve Hughes stating your full postal address, organisation, the species and number required and the type of research or trials intended.
The national Enhancing Germplasm Conservation for Australian Agriculture project, funded by the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC), aims to acquire and conserve germplasm of strategic importance to agriculture in Australia.