Big range dry­land wheat yields

Southern Riverina news - - RURAL OUTLOOK - By John Lacy

The yield range of the 15 Finley Dis­cus­sion Groups dry­land wheat yields in 2017 was 1.5t/ha to 5.6t/ha. The av­er­age yield was 3.5t/ha. The yields were linked to the wide crop rain range based on fal­low, grow­ing sea­son rain­fall and evap­o­ra­tion.

Jer­ilderie had crop rain of 123mm com­pared to 191mm for Oak­lands.

The crops were bi­ased to the higher rain Ber­ri­gan group.

The 5 high­est yields 4.2 to 5.6t/ha had very high wa­ter use ef­fi­cien­cies (WUE) of 30- 34kg/ mm in­di­cat­ing these crops ben­e­fited from ex­tra sub­soil mois­ture from 2016 wa­ter­logged crops.

The WUE for most of the crops was high good prac­tices were used.

Va­ri­eties - the high yield­ing va­ri­eties were Condo, Sun­top and Lancer with mod­er­ate yields and good WUE 18-24kg/mm from Co­rack and Sun­top. Sun­top is still per­form­ing on dry­land.

Ro­ta­tion - Six of the high WUE crops were sown into canola stub­ble al­though the 5.1 and 5.6 tonne stub­bles was burnt. Condo was sown into burnt bar­ley stub­ble.

Two Co­rack crops which have mod­er­ate re­sis­tance to yel­low leaf spot were sown into re­tained wheat stub­ble and one Sun­top sown into pea stub­ble. Canola still dom­i­nates ro­ta­tions.

Sow­ing date - The higher yields were sown in the first two weeks May.

All crops were sown at 70-80kg/ha in May and emer­gence was mainly in May.

This is the first time there were no crops sown in late April be­cause of the rain timing and no Gre­gory.

Fer­tiliser - DAP and MAP were com­mon at sow­ing with zinc linked to the higher yields. All crops were top­dressed with 80-150kg/ha urea and the to­tal ni­tro­gen ap­plied in urea terms was 104-170kg/ha. Cop­per and zinc liq­uids were ap­plied to 4 higher yield­ing crops.

Weed con­trol - Fal­low, pre and post emer­gence weed con­trol of most crops were good.

Flow­er­ing mois­ture - Most crops only had poor of fair soil mois­ture so the late rains must have as­sisted yields.

Harvest sell­ing - There is a new trend through all the win­ter crop re­sults of more and more farm­ers not sell­ing at harvest with eight crops not or partly sold or ware­housed.

Farm­ers said yield in­creases were from washed out ar­eas, weed con­trol, di­rect drilling, ni­tro­gen af­ter peas, Gau­cho® / Vi­brance® Emerge®, seed dress­ings, zinc on fer­tiliser and will pre-drill more ni­tro­gen in good sea­sons.

Farm­ers said their yield de­creases were from crown rot (with a lot of wheat in ro­ta­tion), army­worms, ran­dom and late frost dam­age and rain cut­ting out in spring.

The in­for­ma­tion in this ar­ti­cle has been pre­pared in good faith based on avail­able in­for­ma­tion and farmer feed­back.

John Lacy (pic­tured) is an in­de­pen­dent agri­cul­ture con­sul­tant based in Finley.

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