Home / Crops / Wheat / Wheat Production / Wheat test weight or varietyWhich is more important this year?

Wheat test weight or varietyWhich is more important this year?

Agriculture.com Staff 08/08/2007 @ 2:07pm

Many wheat producers in central and eastern Kansas are facing a dilemma this summer: Is it better to buy low-test-weight certified seed of a variety well adapted to their area, or high-test-weight certified seed of a variety that is not well-adapted to their area?

The first criterion producers in central and eastern Kansas should consider is whether the variety they buy is resistant to soil-borne mosaic, says Jim Shroyer, agronomy state leader for K-State Research and Extension.

"Many of the varieties grown widely in western Kansas do not have soil-borne mosaic resistance. Producers in central and eastern Kansas would be putting their wheat crop at risk of getting soil-borne mosaic by planting these varieties," he explains in a university report.

But some varieties grown in western Kansas are resistant to soil-borne mosaic, he adds.

"The problem is, some of these varieties are quite susceptible to leaf rust and powdery mildew, and have not performed especially well in central and eastern Kansas in recent years," Shroyer says. "Newer varieties have performed well in central and eastern Kansas, and have better leaf disease resistance. But most of these varieties are not grown on many acres in western Kansas yet, and there won´t be a good supply of high quality certified seed of those varieties available this fall."

Variety selection isn´t the only consideration. Seed quality also has to be considered, the agronomist said. "It has been documented that wheat with a test weight below 54 to 56 pounds per acre may have lower yield potential, and less seedling vigor, than higher-test-weight seed. It is understandable that producers would want to plant seed with a test weight of 58 pounds or higher if possible," he says.

If producers in central and eastern Kansas are faced with a decision of whether to buy low-test-weight seed of a variety with soil-borne mosaic resistance or high-test-weight seed of a variety susceptible to soil-borne mosaic, the best choice would be to buy seed of the variety with soil-borne mosaic resistance, Shroyer says.

"It is critical to select a variety adapted to the area where it will be planted," he says. "That is by far the most important criterion. As long as a variety is adapted to the area, then seed quality is the next most important criterion."

Many wheat producers in central and eastern Kansas are facing a dilemma this summer: Is it better to buy low-test-weight certified seed of a variety well adapted to their area, or high-test-weight certified seed of a variety that is not well-adapted to their area?

CancelPost Comment
MORE FROM AGRICULTURE.COM STAFF more +

Farm and ranch risk management resources By: 07/07/2010 @ 9:10am Government resources USDA Risk Management Agency Download free insurance program and…

Major types of crop insurance policies By: 07/07/2010 @ 9:10am Crop insurance for major field crops comes in two types: yield-based coverage that pays an…

Marketing 101 - Are options the right tool… By: 07/07/2010 @ 9:10am "If you are looking for a low risk way to protect yourself against prices moving either higher or…

MEDIA CENTERmore +
This container should display a .swf file. If not, you may need to upgrade your Flash player.
Looking Out for Soybean Cyst Nematodes