April 16, 2013
With growers selecting new crop varieties based on yielding ability, grain quality and disease resistance, new Australian Hard (AH) wheat variety Wallup is shaping up to be one of the most reliable options for Victoria’s Wimmera and North Central regions. Horsham grower Cameron Mibus said Wallup had such a good disease rating that he would not be applying fungicide to fertiliser sown with the seed this year, which was a requirement with other varieties. “It has a very good disease package. It’s definitely a lot better than Gladius and Correll,’’ Mr Mibus said. “It also is less susceptible to sprouting than other varieties, which can be a factor here, as it was in 2010.’’ The Mibus family crops 730ha of their 1215ha “Mycumbeen” property to wheat, barley, canola, manola, beans and triticale, while they also have grown lentils and peas. They grew a seed production crop of the Wallup variety for reseller, AGF Seeds, last season and as well as demonstrating its management attributes, it also achieved the highest yield and grain quality on the property. Despite the dry finish to the season, it yielded 4.2 tonnes per hectare, which was slightly ahead of the Phantom and Gladius varieties grown on the farm. “It suits this environment with its rainfall and soils, and it is better than Phantom,’’ Mr Mibus said. The family now plans to grow the variety commercially this year. The mid-maturing Wallup was bred at the Australian Grain Technologies (AGT) Horsham breeding centre and was targeted at addressing the requirements of Wimmera growers. It has good resistance to stem, stripe and leaf rusts, as well as Cereal Cyst Nematode (CCN), while it has useful resistance to root lesion nematode and yellow leaf spot. Good straw strength provides for good resistance to lodging and it tends to produce low screening losses and good test weights. Jamie Petrass, an agronomist with Landmark based at Horsham, said the Wallup variety’s disease package, especially its superior rust resistance and tolerance of yellow leaf spot, was its strongest attribute for the Wimmera and North Central regions. “It’s a pretty handy AH variety and its grain quality is pretty good,’’ Mr Petrass said. He said his family grew it alongside Derrimut on their property between Horsham and Warracknabeal last season. “They grew similarly and yield wise they were similar, but the Wallup was a lot better against disease and was easier to thresh,” Mr Petrass said. “It’s a good all-round variety and I’m guessing that more of it will be going in this year. One grower has already decided to grow it as his main wheat variety because of its better management.’’ Tim Brown, of AGF Seeds at Smeaton, located between Ballarat and Bendigo, said a lot of growers through the medium rainfall region were looking to replace the Correll and Gladius varieties with Wallup. “They are getting out of Correll because of its test weights and Gladius because of its sprouting,’’ Mr Brown said. It also performed strongly in National Variety Trials in the South East of South Australia. Mr Brown said its stiff straw type could make it “a good fit’’ in the North Central region, where its excellent disease and grain quality package could result in it replacing Chara, which was widely grown in the area. “Chara is a bit of a sucker for stripe rust, so Wallup would be easier to manage,’’ he said. Growers who purchase Wallup seed from a recognised retailer will, in future, be able to legally sell or trade grain of Wallup for seed to other farmers through AGT’s Seed Sharing program, which has proven exceptionally popular with growers in other states.