• Oilseed rape programme relaunched
• High biomass and early spring vigour
• Adaptable to range of circumstances
Seed specialist RAGT has relaunched its oilseed rape programme with some promising varieties showcased at last months Cereals event.
The first two varieties stemming from the programme took centre stage at the two-day event – and both will be commercialised in time for growers this autumn.
RGT Kanzzas is a high biomass variety with early spring vigour and medium early maturity. It is a Recommended List candidate for the East/West region.
“This is a great package,” says RAGT Seeds managing director Lee Bennett.
“It has amazing light leaf spot resistance, the best of all varieties in official National List trials – no other variety can hold a candle to it.
“It has solid phoma resistance and is a real grower, with good establishment and spring vigour. It is short, stiff and early to mature and so consistent for output and pod shatter resistance – it takes some beating.”
The other oilseed rape variety is HRF19240 – marketed as RGT Blackmoon in Europe. Described another growy type, it is currently undergoing NL2 trials in the UK.
“It is stuffed full of yield, grows like nettles, and is resistant to turnip yellows virus. It also has pod shatter resistance. Across Europe last year it didn’t matter where it was, if it wasn’t top it was right up there.
“That to me says one thing: it is adaptable in a wide set of circumstances,” says Mr Bennett.
Limited amounts of seed will be available for both varieties this autumn. RGT Kanzzas will be available through Agrii, with HRF19240 available from ADM Agriculture and Williams Seeds.
Several very promising new wheat, oilseed rape and barley varieties from RAGT Seeds are also making their debut, delivering some strong pest and disease resistance traits alongside agronomic improvements.
Winter wheat variety Genserus is named for its genetic security – and denotes RAGT’s varieties which carry the gene that confers resistance to barley yellow dwarf virus.
“The trait offers protection from the day the wheat is planted to the day it is harvested, for less than the cost of a single pyrethroid spray. It greatly simplifies crop management, while benefiting the environment.”
RGT Grouse is the latest in the pipeline of Genserus varieties. This Group 4 hard Recommended List candidate has the added benefit of resistance to orange wheat blossom midge.
“This double resistance will enable many growers to produce insecticide-free wheat, which has obvious attractions within all markets,” says Mr Bennett.
RGT Grouse is a slower developing type, so is highly suited to earlier sowings when the risk of BYDV is at its highest. It has very good yield potential and disease resistance.
“It is a good-looking wheat with prostrate autumn and winter growth and high tillering capacity. It also retains tillers, which lends itself to a denser canopy. Ear fertility is good and the variety has an outstanding bright finish.”
Anticipating keen demand, RAGT has fast-tracked seed production, so limited quantities of commercial seed will be available for autumn 2023.
RGT Orcade is RAGT’s first commercial winter barley. This two-row feed variety is tolerant to BYDV. To have a commercial presence in the winter sector is a very exciting progression for RAGT, says Mr Bennett.
“RGT Orcade is currently in NL2 trials so a couple of years from commercialisation, but it looks promising and brings a very strong disease resistance package to the market, with high scores against all major pathogens.
“It also produces plenty of grain with a very decent specific weight.”
A new spring barley also features in the form of RGT Eclipse, an RL candidate variety which is up for full recommendation this autumn. This potential brewing barley has the highest hot water extract figure in its group.
Yield is on a par statistically with Laureate, and the variety’s high untreated yield suggests robust in-field resistance to the major foliar diseases. It produces high specific weight grain and matures early.
“It looks a very good variety and not only for the UK – we believe it has pan-European potential too,” says Mr Bennett.