Gunnedah agronomist Andrew Ceeney was one of many in the wheat industry monitoring the progress of new quick maturity, Australian Prime Hard wheat variety, Mustang last season.
The variety, bred by LongReach Plant Breeders and marketed under the Pacific Seeds brand, was bulked up across northern NSW and Queensland farms ahead of it’s 2018 commercial release and was entered for the first time in National Variety Trials (NVTs).
Mr Ceeney, from Pinnacle Agriculture, said he was able to track Mustang’s performance first-hand because he had two cropping clients trialling approximately 10 hectares each.
“One grower north of Gunnedah had it up against mid-late maturity Lancer and the way the season went, Mustang was the better performer,” he said.
“Obviously, it was very quick to finish off with last year being well below average in terms of winter-spring rainfall in the area.
“This quicker maturity and ability to fill grain earlier in the spring as conditions tighten for moisture – that was where the extra yield was created.”
He said his other client, further west of the Liverpool Plains, had it up against early-mid maturity Spitfire and it was very competitive in both yield and grain quality.
“Mustang was sitting around 3-4t/ha range across both paddocks,” Mr Ceeney said.
“This was an exceptional result given well below average growing season rainfall (GSR).
“When emptying the gauges last season, GSR ranged from 80 to 150mm in an area generally receiving 250mm plus.
“Both growers were very impressed with Mustang, particularly in its ability to stay compact in the vegetative stage and save stored soil moisture for the critical grain fill period.”
Pacific Seeds’ Reliant and Mustang were the highest yielding APH varieties in the 2017 NVTs at nearby Spring Ridge, with yields of 4.78t/ha and 4.53t/ha respectively.
Mr Ceeney said growers would stay with Lancer from an early sowing opportunity point of view and Mustang would give growers another variety comparative to Spitfire for yield and protein accumulating characteristics for a mid-May sowing option.