What is the most proper adjective or adjectival construction to describe a plant like medick (burclover) that can be harvested for hay several times per season?

Medick is noted for being a perennial, ____ plant with a high yield.

Would "multiple-harvest" fit, or is it better to remodel the sentence? How about "multi-cut"?

A woman was translating the sentence from Russian, and asked for the proper term on a translators' forum. The original Russian adjective (многоукосный) was unknown even to me, it is so rare, but I wondered whether there is an alternative in English.

This original word is basically "multi-cut" (mnogo = many, kosit' = to cut (grass)).

  • 2
    I think they're known as repeat-bearing or everbearing.
    – TimR
    May 18, 2016 at 17:35
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    With this consideration in mind, the gal from the translators' forum has chosen "muti-cut". May 18, 2016 at 18:13
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    How could a client understand the meaning when he gives someone a job to translate what he doesn't understand? Multi-cut plant? Really?
    – user24743
    May 18, 2016 at 18:40
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    Multicut is used in industry. For example books.google.com/… & books.google.com/…
    – Adam
    May 18, 2016 at 19:30
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    @Rathony did you see the links from Adam's comment? Multicut is not completely ridiculous. If there is one thing we should all understand about how English works, it's that there are very few "rules" that don't have at least one exception :) Multicut crop seems completely reasonable to me, so I don't understand why you think it doesn't make sense. Would you explain?
    – ColleenV
    May 18, 2016 at 20:44

1 Answer 1


Multicut is a good choice.

This can sound a little strange, if you aren't familiar with the agricultural uses of the word cut, which extend beyond the idea of slicing, and directly into the concept of harvest. For farmers, "cut" can be noun synonymous with harvest. Example:

Single-cut [clover] does not flower in the seeding year, or after the first cut in succeeding years. http://www.omafra.gov.on.ca/english/crops/facts/info_redclover_haylage.htm

A farmer's first cut is the first harvest of hay in a given year.

Adjectives are commonly formed with an ordinal number and cut. (e.g. first cut clover, second cut alfalfa, third cut timothy)

Timothy, alfalfa, and clover are all crops that are at least double-cut crops.

You can refer to any double or triple-cut crops as multicut crops. For example:

Improved, multicut oats are very popular in urban irrigated areas, and have almost replaced poor quality wheat and rice straw as the basis of winter feed.
Source: The United Nations


In Pakistan a little information is available on the interactive effects of nitrogen and sowing methods on the quality and fodder yield of multicut sorghum.

Most of these terms are not in general parlance - but then again, many city dwellers don't know the difference between hay and straw, and have no idea that multiple cuts are possible. If the translation is being done for people in or familiar with the agriculture industry, multicut would be the expected term.

The change I would recommend to that translator is the choice of the word "plant." In agriculture, plants that can be harvested are usually referred to as "crops" when they are being discussed as categories - the individual organism is a plant, the category of organism is a crop.

Medick is noted for being a perennial, multicut crop with a high yield.

As discussed in the comments to the original post, related words include:

Everbearing: providing fruit more or less continuously through an extended season, like some berries in my region.

Repeat bearing: developing ripe fruit more than once in a season, like some fig trees.

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