New paper on farm network field-scale, cultivar evaluation of organic wheat

A new open access paper on our work on organic wheat variety trialling, arising out of the LIVESEED project, has been published in Agronomy for Sustainable Development.

Cultivar choice and post-emergence weed management strategies are determinants of organic wheat performance. Taller cultivars can suppress weeds better than modern dwarf cultivars. Photo: Mark Lea

Costanzo A, Amos D, Bickler C, Trump A (2021) Agronomic and genetic assessment of organic wheat performance in England: a field-scale cultivar evaluation with a network of farms. Agron. Sustain. Dev. 41, 54 (2021).

With a network of organic farmers we undertook a field-scale evaluation of 11 cultivars, integrated with an agronomic survey to raise evidence on organic wheat performance in real-farm, field-scale conditions. Besides climatic variation, crop-weed interactions appeared as the main driver of crop performance, with significant differences in cultivar weed suppressive abilities and in the effectiveness of post-emergence weed management strategies. To foster agroecological transition crop-weed relations, weed management strategies, and their effects on nutrient use efficiency should be addressed in wheat breeding and cultivar testing.

This work is being continued in the Livewheat project.

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