AgMemo - Grains news, December 2017

Page last updated: Thursday, 7 December 2017 - 10:37am

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Harvest lupins now to retain seed

DPIRD research officer Martin Harries with Jurien lupins that were part of a trial that quantified how rainfall on mature crops impacts seed germination rates.

Lupin growers intending to retain seed should harvest crops as soon as possible, rather than risk poor crop establishment from grain affected by rain.

Research conducted by Department of Primary Industries ad Regional Development (DPIRD) research officer Martin Harries has found a reduction in germination rates of up to 40% in seed from wet lupin pods.

While many variables could influence the severity of rain damage on wet pods, the impact on germination rates was conclusive and the reduction in seed quality was even greater than expected.

Widespread, variable spring rainfall this season and crops maturing at different times mean it is important for growers to evaluate their harvest program carefully and to prioritise lupin crops destined for seed.

For best results:

  • get lupin seed tested before sowing, even if harvesting early, to make sure you have quality seed for next year’s plantings.
  • carefully store lupins over summer and aerate them to maintain the quality of the retained seed.

For information about managing weather damaged seed and storage see Retaining seed fact sheet (Grains Research and Development Corporation).

More information about Seed testing services provided by the department’s Diagnostic Laboratory Services can be found on the department’s website.

For more information contact Martin Harries, Research Officer, +61 (0)8 9956 8553.