Dec. 18, 2013
All three of the new InVigor varieties being offered have the LibertyLink trait, which gives growers an alternative to the glyphosate-resistant systems.
“Having that LibertyLink trait, from an agronomic standpoint, gives you a chance to rotate chemistries on your farm,” Rollness said. “The way things are going, farmers are using glyphosate for growing corn and soybeans; they are using it for a burn down on wheat and sugarbeets. And it’s a good product, but the utility of it isn’t going to last forever if we continue to use it at the rate we are now. So breaking that cycle and getting a different mode of action in there is important.”
High oil content – The new variety L252 is the first InVigor hybrid offering high-oil content. This is a mid-season variety with high yield potential.
“This is a really nice fit in the traditional canola growing areas, plus it meets the previsions of the specialty oil contract being offered by the NorthStar canola plant at Hallock (Minn.) that includes a premium price for certain high-oil potential varieties,” Rollness said.
Pod shatter tolerance – Another new canola hybrid is L140P. The P at the end of the variety number stands for pod shatter.
“We have pod shatter tolerance built right into the plant,” he said. “Basically that trait keeps the pod intact, so growers can either delay swathing until a later time, or it can allow the straight harvesting of canola.”
The tolerance to pod shatter also reduces the impact of late-season moisture and wind events that can split pods and shell seeds before harvest.
Sclerotinia tolerance – The last new hybrid, L160S has built in tolerance to Sclerotinia stem rot. Sclerotinia is one of the most serious and common diseases of canola, especially along the top tier of counties in North Dakota.
By planting L160S, growers may be able to delay or even avoid a fungicide application, according to Rollness.
The fact that it’s a full season variety also makes it ideal for growing in the northern production areas, he noted.
Market conditions – Rollness said the current market situation should cause growers who haven’t been raising canola in the past to take another look at including canola in their rotations.
“Pricing of all commodities has slipped some, but canola prices haven’t fallen as much as some of the other commodities,” he said, “so the pricing is still pretty decent on canola.”
The latest discussion by the Food and Drug Administration on the harmful impact of trans fats in the human diet might also end up being a positive factor for canola production, since canola oil has zero trans fats.
The trend this year for more winter wheat acres should also be an incentive for more canola acres, since winter wheat and canola are good companion crops, according to Rollness.
“If you are growing winter wheat, canola is such a fabulous option to get that tall, foot-high stubble out there to seed your winter wheat into,” he said. “That stubble provides such a nice snow catch – it really is a nice fit in that rotation. They do well together.”
Seed supplies for 2014 – As with any new varieties being introduced, the seed supplies for all three varieties are somewhat reduced for the 2014 growing season, he noted.
“But, the good news is we are really looking at increasing production for 2015,” he said. “Our goal is to get these varieties out and to have growers touch them, look at them and see what they think of them. Then, going into 2015, get a broad acreage across the state.”
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