Tag Archives: Kansas Wheat

The Kansas State University recently released three new wheat varieties, which are available to Certified seed growers this fall and will be available to farmers in fall 2020.
The new releases include two hard red winter wheat varieties – KS Western Star and KS Dallas – and one hard white wheat, KS Silverado. They were all developed at the K-State Agricultural Research Center in Hays, Kan. The wheat breeding program at Kansas State University, with locations in Manhattan and Hays, receives funding from the Kansas Wheat Commission through the two-cent wheat checkoff.

Thanks to wheat breeding programs like the one at K-State, producers have ever-improving options of wheat varieties to plant. Whether it’s improved resistance or increased yields, wheat breeders are creating varieties that meet producers’ changing needs.

KS Western Star

KS Western Star was named after the Western Star Milling Company in Salina, Kan. It is adapted to central and western Kansas, eastern Colorado, northwest Oklahoma and southwest Nebraska.

KS Western Star is a medium maturity and medium tall statured variety. It had greater yields than any other hard red winter wheat varieties in the KIN tests in 2017 and 2018. On average over the two years, it yielded more than any common check varieties, including Joe. KS Western Star has resistances to stripe rust, leaf rust and soilborne mosaic virus. It has very good straw strength and grain shattering resistance along with good milling and baking qualities. KS Western Star has good pre-harvest sprouting resistance.

KS Western Star has very good drought tolerance and high yield potential. While it is susceptible to Hessian fly and wheat streak mosaic virus, it has wheat curl mite resistance and intermediate resistance to Triticum mosaic virus.

KS Dallas

KS Dallas was named after retired plant pathologist Dr. Dallas Seifers, who worked at the K-State Agricultural Research Center in Hays and helped to develop the WSM2 gene found in the varieties KS Dallas and Joe. It is adapted to the western half of Kansas, eastern Colorado, northwest Oklahoma, the Texas panhandle and southwest Nebraska.

KS Dallas is a medium maturity and medium height variety. It performed well in western Kansas in 2017 and 2018. KS Dallas has a strong disease package with wheat streak mosaic virus resistance up to 70°F, which is three degrees higher than those resistant varieties with WSM2, such as Joe and Oakley CL. It has moderate resistance to stripe rust and good resistance to leaf rust and stem rust. It is susceptible to soilborne mosaic virus and moderately susceptible to Hessian fly. It has good shattering resistance and pre-harvest sprouting resistance. Its straw strength is about average, which is similar to T158.

KS Dallas has good milling and baking qualities. In general, it has good flour yield, high water absorption and good mixing tolerance.

KS Silverado

KS Silverado is a hard white wheat with medium-early maturity and medium-short height. It is adapted to central and western Kansas. It has very good pre-harvest sprouting resistance. Its shattering resistance is moderate, which is similar to Joe. Its straw strength is very good.

KS Silverado showed resistance to wheat streak mosaic virus in inoculated tests in the growth chamber at 64°F. It has moderate to intermediate resistance to stripe and stem rusts, and wheat blast. It is resistant to leaf rust, Hessian fly, and soilborne mosaic virus. It is moderately susceptible to Fusarium head blight, barley yellow dwarf virus and powdery mildew. Preliminary data showed that it has intermediate resistance to Triticum mosaic virus.

Whether you are looking for high grain yield, rust resistance, heat and drought tolerance, resistance to wheat streak mosaic virus or milling and baking quality, Kansas State University’s wheat breeding program has a variety for you. These three new varieties will be available to Kansas wheat farmers in fall 2020 through Kansas Wheat Alliance associates. Visit kswheatalliance.org for more information on these and other wheat variety options.
Hidden in the stubble of 2019’s wheat harvest, wheat curl mites are moving to find sprouting volunteer wheat seedlings to inhabit and continue the life cycle of wheat streak mosaic virus. The wheat streak mosaic virus (WSMV) instigated by these mites seriously affects the total yield of a wheat crop.

 

On average, WSMV causes $75 million in losses to Kansas wheat farmers every year. Wheat Streak Mosaic can cause a yield loss of more than 80 percent. WSMV isn’t treatable, but it is preventable. If we take preventative measures now, future yields will improve exponentially.

 

The virus is spread by the wheat curl mite, which feeds on wheat and other grasses. Wheat curl mites and the virus must have green host tissue to survive on throughout the summer after harvest. They most commonly reside on volunteer wheat that blew out the back of the combine or shattered grain from hail storms that happened before harvest. The mites on the fallen kernels move to the sprouting volunteer seedlings as new plants emerge in the summer.

 

Volunteer wheat is considered a “green bridge” because it allows the wheat curl mites and the virus to survive the summer.

 

Losses due to WSMV depend on variety, weather, percentage of infected plants and the time of infection. The first visible symptoms usually pop up in April on the edges of fields near volunteer wheat. Yellow streaking and mosaic patterns on young leaves and stunted tillers are some of the first signs. Symptoms worsen as the weather warms. Leaves on the infected plants turn yellow from the tip down, but usually the leaf veins remain green the longest. This gives the appearance of a striped yellow and green leaf, if the leaf is able to unfurl completely at all.

 

The best way to prevent the spread of the wheat streak mosaic virus is to remove volunteer wheat and other grassy weeds. Volunteer wheat must be completely dead and dry for two weeks before planting a new wheat crop. Volunteer wheat and other grassy weeds can be killed with herbicides or tillage.

 

A second management practice to limit the spread of the virus is to avoid early planting. Plant wheat after the “hessian fly free date” for your area. In some areas in western Kansas where there is no Hessian fly-free date, farmers should choose to wait until late September or October to plant their wheat. Planting after these dates will reduce the risk for the new wheat crop and reduce wheat curl mites from moving to new locations of wheat.

 

In addition, there are a few wheat varieties with moderate resistance to this devastating disease. Hard white wheats Joe and Clara CL, as well as hard red winter wheat Oakley CL have performed well in areas with wheat streak mosaic.
This resistance is not perfect and these plants may still be susceptible to triticum mosaic or high plains mosaic viruses. The resistance to wheat streak mosaic is less effective at temperatures above 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Therefore, planting these varieties early for grazing can place fields at risk for disease-related yield losses.
Undoubtedly, the best method to control WSMV is controlling the volunteer wheat.

 

Be a good steward, and a good neighbor, when making these management decisions, and you might just be rewarded with a boost in bushels on your next wheat crop.

 

For more information on controlling volunteer, head to K-State Agronomy’s E-Update resource.