04 July 2015 | Online since 2003

Rape varieties perform better than hybrids



13 August 2012 15:47:16|Arable,Crops,News

Rape varieties perform better than hybrids


In a season where hybrid oilseed rape varieties look to have underperformed, a leading expert has observed that in his trials conventional varieties have flourished under the same challenging conditions experienced this season.

Simon Kightley of NIABTAG has noticed that overall conventional winter oilseed rape varieties have generally yielded better and that some of the older varieties, particularly Es Astrid, have performed well again this year.

“I keep thinking that maybe Astrid could begin to lose its place, but results from our trials this season indicate that it is very much alive and kicking and should definitely not be written off. It was added to the HGCA list in 2005 and it still performs to a good level, year after year. Being a low biomass conventional variety, Astrid stands well and because it produces an open canopy has the ability to make the most of the light, especially in a season such as the one we have just endured, and this reflects in its high yield. In two trials this season in Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire, it achieved seed yields of 109% and 108% respectively.”

Thinking why Astrid and other conventional varieties may have performed better than hybrids, Simon Kightley says that the conditions this year encouraged hybrids to produce too much vegetative growth and too large a canopy. “This meant that they did not get the light penetration through the canopy that they needed to get good seed set and pod fill. In some instances it also meant that crops lodged badly. As conventionals are drilled at higher seed rates you may have thought that they would be at higher lodging risk, but excessive vegetative growth and a dense canopy resulted in a higher lodging risk for the hybrids overall.

Commenting on the season, Simon says that most rape was drilled under good conditions last autumn and grew well in the autumn and winter. “Again some hybrids could be said to have grown too much. But it was the heavy rainfall and low light conditions that put paid to yields. Overall yields this year are probably lower than normal. In trials we would expect average yields of 4.5 t/ha but in the three trials harvested to date yields were 3.8, 4.08 and 3.29 t/ha (or 3.72 t/ha average) – well down on last year and even down on the average.”

Neil Groom, Technical Director of Grainseed, says that Astrid continues to be a very popular and widely grown rape variety. “It still seems to tick all the boxes for many growers. It is a low biomass conventional variety that still performs consistently well. It has a high stem canker resistance rating of 7, very good stem stiffness of 8 and resistance to lodging of 8. Being low biomass means that it is easily managed and harvested. One key characteristic of Astrid that has come to the fore this season is that it yields reliably and consistently over different seasons and under different conditions. It offers a really good all round package.”

Download




Comments


No comments posted yet. Be the first to post a comment

To post comment without approval login or register

Display name

Please enter your name

Email (optional)
Comment

Please enter your comment

Post Comment

Your comment submitted successfully.Please wait for admin approval.

Some error on your process.Please try one more time.



Jobs


Start Date: 19 June 2015
Job for EXPERIENCED  HARVEST TRACTOR DRIVER - LINCOLNSHIRE. 

EXPERIENCED  tractor driver required for harvest 2015 based in North East Lincolnshire.

Must have experience in usin...


Start Date: 3 July 2015
G211: Trainee Dairy Specialist - North East England

A well established and reputable Agricultural Business serving farmers in the North of England is currently seeking a Trainee...


Start Date: 3 July 2015
M485: Sales & Marketing Manager - Biosolids

Senior role, leading established sales & marketing team in the East of England and the Midlands - selling branded biosolids p...


Start Date: 3 July 2015
J532: UK Business Manager - business services

UK Business Manager - business services.De Lacy Executive has been appointed to seek a UK Business Manager to direct and deve...


Start Date: 18 June 2015
Tractor Driver & fencing with more than 5 years experience>> Baldock

Tractor Driver & fencing with more than 5 years experience  ---- A varied job available with a small famil...





Top stories you may have missed
5 June 2015 | Cattle

A strong pound and increased red meat imports coupled with a plentiful dome...


5 June 2015 | Arable

Depression is affecting Wales' farming industry and there is a need to use ...


5 June 2015 | Arable

With just one week to go before the final judging and announcement of the w...


5 June 2015 | Finance

A rural law expert has highlighted the importance of good succession planni...


5 June 2015 | Farmshops

A south Yorkshire dairy farming family is pulling out all the stops to prom...


4 June 2015 | Finance

Predicting what is going to happen to wheat prices is a challenge, but in s...


4 June 2015 | Agri Safety

A Lancashire based livestock theft prevention scheme is aiming to go nation...


4 June 2015 | News

A female farmer has been recognised by the farming and conservation industr...


4 June 2015 | Finance

The new Conservative government appears to be preparing to implement cuts f...


4 June 2015 | Arable

The Rural Payments Agency (RPA) will have mobile support units at the follo...