Limagrain UK: A new high yielder for biscuit wheat growers

LG Prince has the highest yield in its category in the 2021/22 AHDB RL
LG Prince has the highest yield in its category in the 2021/22 AHDB RL.

Limagrain’s new Group 3 biscuit variety, LG Prince, yields 103 per cent more than control and has the highest yield for the category in the AHDB 2021/22 Recommended List (RL). 

The variety’s high yield potential is supported by Limagrain farmer trials undertaken in the high disease pressure season of 2019 in the South-east of England that produced a mean yield of 106 per cent from four sites. According to Limagrain arable technical manager Ron Granger, this marks a step change over the current market leader.

Similar trials held in 2019 in Perth, Scotland, revealed a consistent 10t/ha, showing a yield potential that compares to the current commercial soft wheat varieties commercially grown in the region.

“These are remarkable yields for a biscuit and they challenge feed wheats too, offering growers the option of growing a biscuit wheat as a feed variety with the additional end markets of biscuit or distilling as a bonus,” Mr Granger said.

With a lineage that includes, Cougar, KWS Kielder and Revelation, LG Prince brings together many of the best characteristics of its parents – a good agronomy package together with really good yield potential.

“Both AHDB variety trials and our own research have shown that yields from LG Prince have been remarkably consistent across different sowing dates and soil types, over what have been three very differently testing agronomic years,” Mr Granger added.

Ron Granger of LG Seeds
Ron Granger of LG Seeds.

“LG Prince is an excellent second wheat (104 per cent), which is three to four per cent more than the market leaders in the biscuit sector and equal to some of the highest yielding feed varieties available for this testing situation.”

LG Prince is a later maturing variety (+2) so it’s important to keep the crop green and photosynthesising to the end, in order to optimise the longer time for grain-fill. To this end, Mr Granger recommended the application of a good T3 on the variety.

“This is particularly important for crops growing further north,” he said.

LG Prince does well across a wide window of drilling slots, including both the earlier and late sown opportunities, which is a great asset in a variety.

“In AHDB early sown trials drilled before September 25, the variety achieved 106 per cent of control – not many feed wheat varieties can achieve that from the early slot.

“Although it grows well across different soil types, the best results tend to be in medium and heavier soils where more moisture is conserved during dry periods.

“LG Prince doesn’t take off too quickly regarding its speed of development in the spring; another characteristic that makes the variety suitable for that earlier drilling date on farm.”

Looking at disease resistance ratings, Mr Granger said the new variety has a rating of 83 per cent, which is better than the current market leader.

“Certainly, the older competitor varieties in the biscuit wheat sector tend to have a few challenges from susceptibility to Septoria tritici and yellow or brown rust, but LG Prince offers both good rust and Septoria tritici resistance,” he added.

Also important is the orange wheat blossom midge resistance, which Mr Granger said was now general to all of the company’s varieties in the biscuit category.

“LG Prince is a short, stiff, high-yielding variety, with broad adaptability for on farm placement,” he added. “It has a good Hagberg and an acceptable specific weight.”

David Huish of Daltons Seeds
David Huish of Daltons Seeds.

The seed sales manager at Dalton Seeds, David Huish, sees LG Prince as adding value to the Group 3 market, from its potential to bring growers a premium. The Peterborough-based seed merchant is growing it for the first time in 2021, having contracted a grower to produce a seed crop.

He reports that despite the lack of rain in April, visits to the crop have shown it to be clean and standing up well, if not better, than other varieties.

“It has an acceptable specific weight of 74.8, and if growers wanted to spread their risk slightly, they could grow it alongside another variety such as LG Astronomer,” Mr Huish said. “LG Prince is good in all situations and at 104 per cent in the East, it has a stand-out yield, which leads the biscuit wheat sector and competes with the best in the feed wheat too.

“This offers a real win-win for growers.”