By Claire Browne (BCG)
- Corack, Cosmick and Correll were solid performers in the Mallee in 2014.
- Mace and Shield were the highest yielding varieties in the Wimmera (Horsham).
- Mace, Scout and Corack topped the variety trial in the West Wimmera (Nhill).
- Corack and Mace have been solid performers for the past three years across the Wimmera and Mallee.
As growers have adapted to dryer seasons and later breaks, shorter season wheat varieties have become a common inclusion in Wimmera and Mallee cropping systems. These varieties are better suited to dry sowing, a practice growers have adopted to improve production outcomes and negate the logistic issues associated with late breaks.
In an attempt to understand how wheat varieties perform at different sowing times, trials were established in the Wimmera and Mallee to compare the performance of new and existing wheat varieties under different sowing times. This research is part of GRDC’s stubble initiative, ‘Maintaining profitable farming systems in retained stubble’.
When choosing a new variety, growers need to look at the complete agronomic package of the variety and the likelihood of it being the best fit for the existing farming system.
Growers need to be asking themselves whether adoption of a new variety is really worth considering every year. More often than not the answer will be in the negative.
Key factors to consider are:
- disease resistance
- weed pressure (Clearfield variety)
The ability to utilise varieties with diverse maturity classifications (Early to Mid to Late) will help growers to spread their risk on-farm.
The stubble project – maintaining profitable farming systems in Victoria and Tasmania with retained stubble (project number BWD00024) is funded by the GRDC.