Rachael Freeman Long and Steve Orloff wrote the article for the University of California’s online Alfalfa and Forage News. They say in general perennial crops, such as orchards and vineyards, cannot survive extended periods without irrigation. However, alfalfa is more resilient because it can go into a drought-induced dormancy over the summertime, at least for one year. However, they point out, there is a trade off. They say there will be little yield. Still, research has shown that the stand will persist on most soil types and yield will recover the next year once water is applied to the field again.
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