LG Typhoon – A wheat bred with consistency and and security in mind
LG Typhoon is a high yielding Group 4 that is available to UK growers this autumn. It offers the package that growers have been asking for in a hard wheat; a high yielding, consistent and resilient variety with a solid all-round disease package and OWBM resistance. Ron Granger shares his views on the attributes of the variety and where it fits on farm:-
LG Typhoon delivers an exceptional consistency of performance across very different seasons and regions of the UK, yielding 102% – a great attribute to have in any variety.
Whilst yield is important, growers fundamentally like to grow robust varieties that deliver time and again across seasons and rotations. LG Typhoon’s consistency of performance across locations, seasons and rotations is down to the variety’s excellent all-round foliar disease resistance and agronomic characteristics.
It has a very good untreated yield (89%); an important attribute even in the hard feed sector, that was traditionally a high input, high output scenario, and is a valuable tool regarding fungicide programmes and timings.
LG Typhoon’s resistance rating of 7.2 (3 year data set) for Septoria, comes from a combination of genetic sources different to those in the majority of current RL varieties, and is a significant factor in protecting this resistance rating going forward.
It has an excellent yellow rust resistance of 9, combined with YR seedling resistance; a valuable insurance around the earlier spray windows of T0 & T1, where yellow rust can be the main focus in regional high pressure situations.
However, as both yellow rust and septoria strains are continuosly evolving, all crops should be closely monitored and treated appropriately – a lesson learnt in the 2021 season.
Unlike some feed varieties, LG Typhoon offers the very valuable bonus of Orange Wheat Blossom Midge (OWBM) resistance, in addition to a (6) for eyespot and Fusarium.
Ron believes a lot of second wheats could be drilled this autumn, taking into account the high price of wheat, and highlights LG Typhoon’s excellent performance as a second wheat – yielding 104% of control, putting it amongst the most popular varieties in this rotational position.
LG Typhoon also has stiff straw and good lodging resistance in line with other feed wheats, such as Gleam.
It is a high-tillering variety that has performed well at lower seed rates, exhibiting a flexibility for drilling dates from mid-September to mid-February, however, it exhibits a genuine suitability for the earlier sowing situation, yielding 105% – well over the performance of popular hard wheats Graham and Gleam in this sowing period.
LG Typhoon is slightly later to mature (+2), similar to Costello, but this is not an issue as it is important to have a range of maturities across the farm, to spread harvest risk in catchy seasons.
LG Typhoon has a good specific weight (76.3 kg/hl), similar to that of Gleam.
How LG Typhoon fits a Regenerative farming system
There is still much uncertainty about what varieties best suit a ‘regen’ farming system. We do know that wheats in a regen system tend to be direct drilled, sometimes early, which means they need to sit back, and not race off too fast in the autumn or early spring, which has implications regarding agronomy inputs and programmes.
In trials last year, where we compared the behaviour of a range of varieties drilled in this situation, LG Typhoon did just this, sitting prostrate with a slower plant growth through the winter and into the spring.
It is very high tillering and this attribute, combined with the fact that it filled the wider rows with a very high head count, made it the standout variety in this situation. Its excellent disease profile along with OWBM resistance, allows for some flexibility with inputs – which again suits a regen system.
A Breeders Perspective
How could climate change affect plant pathogens and pests?
We might see diseases in new regions of the UK, or even re-emerging diseases such as stem rust, as increased temperature and rainfall make the environment more favourable. For insect-borne pathogens, we could see more insect generations per season and increased overwinter survival. Milder winters may also mean that diseases are present earlier in the year, as pathogen development hasn’t been slowed by cold frosts.
What are the challenges when breeding for resistance in the face of a changing climate?
A traditional breeding programme can take 10 years from initial cross to commercial variety release. This means we must anticipate what the disease landscape could look like in a decade’s time and make the relevant breeding decisions now. Due to the complexity of climate predictions there’s still a degree of uncertainty, but we have a good idea of which diseases will be important due to multi-year/ location trial data.
Which strategies are you using when breeding for disease resistance?
Resistance is more durable if you aren’t relying on a single gene. So, we’re stacking several resistance genes for each disease of interest to help protect against changes in the pathogen population. For example, LG Typhoon combines multiple resistances for yellow rust and Septoria and has performed well across different climatic seasons and UK regions. Consistency of yield and disease resistance will be important in the face of a changing climate.