Victorian Winter Crop Summary 2013
Introduction to the season
2012 will be remembered as the year that crops performed well despite the limited growing season rainfall. There were two exceptions. Firstly, the south west experienced average rainfall in some areas. Secondly, the north and west Mallee where yields were very much below average.
Rainfall deciles for 2012 summer (January to March) and the growing season (April to November) are shown in Figure 1 below.
Crops drew on stored soil moisture coming from a particularly wet summer across the north, central and eastern parts of the state, but only where weeds were controlled.
Slightly warmer conditions were experienced in spring, but no heatwaves and few frosts enabled crops to finish without stress. The resulting yields, while only approaching average were better than expected for the rainfall.
Looking forward to 2013
Up until early February this has been a dry summer with no moisture added to the profile. Many areas have no stored moisture and unless there is late summer rain or an early break, growers in the lower rainfall areas would be wise to adopt a conservative approach.
The winter crop summary
This publication summarises information on current varieties of the major winter crops grown in Victoria. Sources of more information are listed in each chapter. Local advisers are also a key resource for information relevant to individual localities.
This publication aims to prompt growers to ask themselves, ‘Am I growing the best variety for my situation?’ Use it as a guide for discussion with consultants, advisers and marketing agents.
Thank you to the Grains Research and Development Corporation for their support in making this guide available for Victoria.
At the time of publication some long term yield and quality data was not yet complete. This data will be available from NVTOnline at www.nvtonline.com.au and the text of this publication will be fully updated with the 2012 results and published online at www.dpi.vic.gov.au/agriculture/grain-crops.
National Variety Trials (NVT)
The majority of variety trials presented in this book are sourced from the NVT program. NVT also provide data from some breeding trials to add to the information available. In Victoria NVTs are fully funded by Grains Research and Development Corporation and in 2012 were contracted to two Service Providers: Agrisearch Services Pty Ltd and South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI).
National Variety Trials provide independent information on varieties for growers. The aim of each NVT is to document, for growers, a ranking of new and widely adopted varieties in terms of grain yield and to provide grain quality information relevant to delivery standards.
Conducted to a set of predetermined protocols, NVTs are sown and managed as close as possible to local best practice such as sowing time, fertiliser application, weed management and pest and disease control, including fungicide application. NVTs are not designed to grow varieties to their maximum yield potential.
It is acknowledged that an ongoing project of this type would not be possible without the cooperation of farmers prepared to contribute sites and who often assist with the management of trials on their property.
Changes to disease ratings in 2013
This year the disease rating system has been updated to a national standard agreed by the Australia Cereal Rust Control Program Consultative Committee - Pathologist Working Group. These are outlined with the disease resistance table in each chapter.
Plant Breeding Rights (PBR)
Varieties subject to Plant Breeding Rights at the time of printing are annotated with the symbol . It should be noted that ‘Unauthorised commercial propagation or any sale, conditioning, export, import or stocking of propagation material of these varieties is an infringement under the Plant Breeders Right Act 1994 and that any breaching of PBR law is punishable by a maximum $50 000 fine for each offence’.
End Point Royalties (EPR’s)
EPR’s payable for 2013 are quoted from varietycentral.com.au and are quoted ex‑GST. Compliance with EPR systems is vital to assure the future of the Australian grains industry through the funding of new varieties and long term productivity gains.
The summary is split into 10 chapters on: