Decision data for winter cereals released

Various industry staff members have crunched this data and released it early to ensure farmers 
have the latest information when picking varieties for this fall

Winter wheat variety descriptions: 1 Maturity ratings: E = Early, M = Medium and L = Late. CDC Falcon is considered an Early (E) maturing variety. Varieties plus 2 to 4 days compared to CDC Falcon would be Medium (M) maturing. Varieties greater than 4 days compared to CDC Falcon would be rated as Late (L) maturing.
2 All registered varieties have similar (good) winter hardiness if seeded at the optimum date into standing stubble where good snow cover can be assured. For the newer varieties, there is limited information currently available. As these varieties are grown on more acres, a better understanding of relative winter hardiness will follow.
3 Fusarium head blight (FHB) infection is highly influenced by genetics, environment and heading date. Under high levels of disease pressure, all varieties will experience yield and/or quality loss.
~ Indicates a variety that is protected by Plant Breeder’s Rights or a variety where portection has been applied for but not yet granted at time of printing.

Since 2008, MCVET (Manitoba Crop Variety Evaluation Team) has been publishing winter cereal data collected from its trials shortly after harvest to help farmers and seed growers make variety decisions.

In 2017, yield data is being published for five fall rye and eight winter wheat varieties from 10 locations across Manitoba. Agronomic and disease-resistance information for the winter wheat and fall rye varieties tested by MCVET in 2016-17 is provided in the Variety Description tables. There are a number of newer varieties, so producers should evaluate their attributes when making variety decisions.

Things to keep in mind when looking through the data:

Comparing yield data

Data provided in the yield comparison tables allows producers to make comparisons between varieties at each site, using the statistical information provided in the grey-shaded area located at the bottom of the table.

When assessing the varieties the first step is to look at the “Sig diff” value for each site – a “yes” or “no” indicates if a real difference exists between varieties. For winter wheat, there are no significant differences between varieties at the Arborg site, but there are significant differences between varieties at the Boissevain site.

Winter wheat yield comparisons table: ~ Indicates a variety that is protected by Plant Breeders’ Rights or a variety where protection has been applied for but not yet granted at time of printing. photo: Supplied
Fall rye yield comparisons table photo: Supplied

If varieties at a site are significantly different from one another the next step is to look at the LSD value. LSD stands for Least Significant Difference and shows the number of bushels per acre that varieties must differ by to be considered significantly different. For example, winter wheat varieties at the Boissevain site must differ by more than nine bushels per acre to be considered significantly different. If we compare AAC Wildfire and CDC Chase, CDC Chase yielded significantly higher at the Boissevain site.

The next step is to look at long-term yield data, data that is collected over many years and locations. While it is tempting to only look at data from the site that is closest to your area, individual site data and even data accumulated over several sites in a single year must be viewed with caution. When choosing a variety it is best to look at past Seed Manitoba guides, available at, to see how consistent a variety performs across years and locations.

Fall rye variety descriptions table: 1 Maturity ratings: Hazlet reaches maturity in approximately 219 days. photo: Supplied

Agronomics and disease resistance

While yield is generally the first information farmers look at, characteristics such as maturity, height, standability, and disease resistance are critical to maximizing yield potential and quality. Disease levels were low in winter cereals this year, but diseases such as fusarium head blight can have a large impact on yield and quality.

The variety description tables provide information on winter wheat and fall rye varieties tested by MCVET in 2016-17. Note that long-term yield, protein (for winter wheat), and site years tested does not include the 2017 data (shaded blue area in the tables).

Seed Manitoba 2018

The Seed Manitoba guide will continue to provide the latest unbiased information on post-registration variety performance in Manitoba. Seed Manitoba is a collaborative effort between the Manitoba Seed Growers’ Association, Manitoba Agriculture, and the Manitoba Co-operator. Seed Manitoba 2018 will be available in December and will contain protein data for winter wheat and long-term yield data for winter wheat and fall rye.

Anne Kirk is Manitoba Agriculture’s cereals crops specialist. Contributors to the early release of this data include MCVET co-ordinator Chami Amarasinghe, crop industry development manager Anastasia Kubinec, diversification specialist Craig Linde, manager of research Patti Rothenburger and University of Manitoba wheat breeder Anita Brule Babel, as well as MCVET site contractors and funding agencies.

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