“Farming is often at the sharp end of unpredictable weather events. Varieties that can provide growers with agronomic performance and still serve the market requirements will gradually come to the fore,” says Stephen Belcher, Principal Technical Officer for the Processors and Growers Research Organisation (PGRO), discussing the reasons why varieties are included in the 2022 Descriptive Lists (DL) for pulse crops. The PGRO has added three new varieties: Rivoli, Carrington and Pantani.
The move from a ‘Recommended List’ to a ‘Descriptive List’ last year means information on yield and resistance to prominent diseases is presented in line with modern grower requirements.
Stephen continues: “Since changing to a Descriptive List model in 2020, we are in a transitional phase, so there were no changes to the sites this year and we are still using a five-year data set, with no changes to the rigour or quality of data.
“However, the changes we have made mean that varieties can be viewed in terms of consistency of performance, helping growers to make informed decisions when it comes to making decisions on seed for the next season.” He gives the example of varietal resistance to downy mildew which can vary depending on the races present in the soil: “several varieties on the Descriptive List this year are showing very good resistance to the disease. Powdery mildew, which was a significant problem in 2020, was much less so in 2021.”
Reviewing the year, he continues: “Spring beans had a good year with all but one trial taken through to harvest. As with peas, the difference in maturity between early and later maturing varieties was more pronounced in 2021.”
The full downloadable Descriptive List tables will be published on the PGRO’s website by 11am on Wednesday 24 November 2021. The Descriptive List 2022 is available in both pdf and Excel formats at PGRO’s website. Find out more about PGRO on their member page.