Sowing Date Flexibility – late April to late August
SARACEN is well suited to sowings from late April in both dry land and irrigated conditions through to late August, with the optimum sowing window of early May to late July in Canterbury.
It is a mid-late maturing facultative type. Typically when autumn sown it has a similar flowering date to Torlesse and when spring sown it is 5 days later flowering. (It has a moderate daylength response and a minor cool temperature response so that crops sown later than September in Canterbury will have delayed flowering and maturity, probably reducing yield potential.)
Medium bread wheat sowing rates are recommended (seed size is similar to Regency and it has medium tillering ability). Shoot emergence length will be shorter than Regency and Vanquish, so do not sow too deep (3-4 cm is recommended)
High Yields – 5-10% above Regency/Torlesse
Dry land yields are typically 10% better than Regency/Vanquish/Torlesse.
Irrigated yields are typically 5% better than Regency/Vanquish/Torlesse.
All yields are typically 10% better than Vanquish/Torlesse, based on 2 yrs limited data.
While all cereals need adequate fertility and soil moisture to achieve their yield potential, SARACEN will finish very well in medium to dry conditions, handling any stress well.
Consistent Grading Results – excellent sprout resistance
It has extremely good resistance to sprouting (similar to or better than Conquest) and also produces high initial falling number values, better than Regency/Torlesse and Bakker Gold.
It has lower than average proteins (0.5% below Regency). It consistently produces good values for test weight and screenings. Seed size is consistently within the 44-50 g/1000 range (= to Regency).
Good Disease Tolerance – excellent for all diseases
SARACEN has excellent tolerance to all major diseases (e.g. worst score is similar leaf rust to Regency) allowing low to medium fungicide inputs to be used (e.g. FAR straddle programme).
All crops should always be monitored for susceptibility to new races of diseases. A good ear wash fungicide is the most critical fungicide recommended. It has good BYDV tolerance ( = to Conquest).
Good Straw Strength – short and strong
SARACENis shorter than Regency with very good straw strength, but growth regulators are advised on all early (April/May) sown crops and where yield potential is 8 t/ha plus.
Use 1.25 l/ha Cycocel + 200mls/ha Moddus at GS 30-31 (32 if missed). 1.5 – 2 L Cycocel alone could be used in many low risk conditions.
Needs enough Nitrogen for both high yield and protein
Timing is more critical for facultative bread wheats and should be slightly earlier than for winter feed wheat as development will be faster and all growth stages will have shorter intervals.
Protein levels are slightly lower than average, so all nitrogen applications should be 10-15 % higher than for other cultivars to achieve both the high yield and good quality potential of this cultivar.
Harvesting – low sprout and shedding risk
SARACEN has high initial falling numbers and greater resistance to sprouting than Regency/Conquest/Vanquish, with similar shedding resistance.
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Compiled by Ross Hanson, Plant & Food Research. Ph 0274 535 507
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