Neelam - a desi chickpea for southern Australia

Page last updated: Friday, 5 April 2019 - 11:03am

Please note: This content may be out of date and is currently under review.

Disease management

To minimise yield losses to ascochyta blight, botrytis grey mould and phytophthora, follow local best management guidelines for you region. Use a seed dressing (containing thiram or thiabendazole plus thiram) for the control of ascochyta blight, botrytis grey mould and common root rots.

See disease management guides on the Pulse Australia website.

Ascochyta blight disease management with Neelam is the same as with the other ascochyta resistant (R) varieties PBA Slasher or Genesis 090.

  • Fungicide sprays (a.i.chlorothalonil) are unlikely to be required before podding, but monitor crops for signs of disease.
  • In WA, an early fungicide application is recommended 6-8 weeks after sowing to delay the development of ascochyta blight.
  • In all regions, monitor crops and use a foliar fungicide at early podding prior to rain to ensure pods are protected, and high quality, disease free grain is produced.
  • Pods of Neelam can be affected by ascochyta blight, and this can result in poor quality, discoloured grain or seed abortion and yield loss in severe disease situations.

All current varieties are susceptible to Botrytis grey mould. There is a risk of this disease in Neelam if a dense, bulky canopy develops during a favourable growing season.

  • Apply a fungicide prior to canopy closure in botrytis grey mould prone areas and continue monitoring. Apply further fungicide applications if it is present.

Insect control

Chickpea is highly susceptible to native budworm. Crops need to be monitored from flowering through to pod fill. Small grubs less than 1cm are damaging. Economic threshold for control can be as low as one grub in 20 sweeps.


The crop is ready to harvest when the stems and the majority of pods are light brown and the seed is hard and rattles within the pod. Seed moisture needs to be less than 14%. Pods will be shed if harvest is delayed.

Suggested harvester settings are:

  • Reel speed 1.0 x ground speed.
  • Table auger 10-20mm.
  • Drum or rotor speed 300-600 rpm.
  • Concave clearance 10-25mm (start at 10mm)
  • Fan speed 75-100%.
  • Top sieve: 16-25mm (start at 25mm).
  • Bottom sieve: 8-16mm (start at 16mm).


Neelam grain is a desi type chickpea suitable for the whole and splitting human food markets. Seed size is similar to that of PBA Slasher. However, its seed coat colour is lighter than PBA Slasher. The seed size is very uniform and this coupled with seed colour make it attractive marketing. Other quality attributes also compare well with current varieties.

Seed availability

Neelam is currently available and is being commercialised through Heritage Seeds.

Seed supply enquiries