Saltbush does not tolerate extended periods of waterlogging or being planted in frost prone areas.
Saltbush is not tolerant of acid soils as aluminium (Al) becomes available, which is highly toxic to saltbush. If saltbush is being considered, soil test for pH and aluminium in both the topsoil (zero to ten centimetres) and subsoil (ten to twenty centimetres).
If aluminium comprises more than two percent of the cation exchange capacity (CEC) in the topsoil, apply lime to correct it. If subsoil aluminium is a problem, saltbush should not be planted
Once fodder shrubs are established, grazing must be managed to promote growth and maximum yield to increase water use. Lightly graze the shrubs when they have reached about sixty centimetres in height, as the roots will have established a good hold on the soil.
The paddock can be used as a feed gap reserve and should be grazed on an eighty day cycle. Let stock graze the leaves of the bushes and remove them when they begin to nibble the stems. The length of time this takes is dependent on the stocking density and other feed available in the paddock.
It is important to supply good quality water when grazing saltbush or blue bush, as stock will avoid an excessive daily salt intake. The more salt in the fodder the less the stock can tolerate in their water.
Saltbush and other fodder shrubs have also been extensively trialled in drier parts of New Zealand, not only for the treatment of saline areas but also as a drought resistant feed alternative to pasture on dry north facing slopes where production, especially during summer is negligible.
A pioneer of the New Zealand use of saltbush was Hakataramea farmer, Mike Brosnan (pictured below) who fenced off and planted out his steep terrace sidlings on his terrace farm to provide emergency feed for stock from the grazeable shrubs but also for soil erosion control purposes. Mike was an enthusiastic promoter of the grazing shrub concept and held a number of Field Days on his property to demonstrate the concept.