Phillip Gross of Warden, Wash., was named the highest yield winner of the National Wheat Foundation’s 2017 National Wheat Yield Contest. Gross entered the competition with Limagrain Cereal Seeds variety LCS Jet and a blockbuster irrigated winter wheat yield of 184.29 Bu/A — 247.7 percent over the average county yield.
Of the contest entries that featured Limagrain Cereal Seeds (LCS) varieties, more than 75 percent were named winners. LCS growers topped the irrigated winter wheat leaderboard in both Washington and Oregon, including first place showings for Gross and Nathan Rea of Milton Freewater, Ore., with LCS Jet and LCS Drive, respectively.
Gross learned about LCS Jet from Washington State University trials. “I watched the plots and really, really liked how it did – with disease, yield potential, standability and overall with the way we farm,” says Gross, noting that LCS Jet came out on top when university harvest data was published. “We acquired seed the next year, and it did terrific for us.”
“LCS has a first-class breeding program in the Northwest. They’re leading with the top varieties in hard red and soft white categories, and in barley as well,” says Rea. “They are really focused on high yields, but also excellent disease resistance. They’re also focused on providing some earlier varieties, which is helpful in our area.”
In the dryland winter wheat category, Jason Beechinor placed first in Oregon with LCS Jet. Norwest Duet also produced award-winning yields in the contest.
LCS National Winners:
· Overall High Yield Winner: Phillip Gross, Warden Hutterian Brethren (WA), 184.29 Bu/A with LCS Jet
· 5th Place Winter Wheat-Irrigated: Nathan Rea, HT Rea Farming (OR), 161.99 Bu/A with LCS Drive
LCS State Winners:
· 1st Place Winter Wheat-Irrigated Oregon: Nathan Rea, HT Rea Farming, 161.99 Bu/A with LCS Drive
· 2nd Place Winter Wheat-Irrigated Oregon: Nathan Rea, HT Rea Farming, 142.44 Bu/A with Norwest Duet
· 1st Place Winter Wheat-Irrigated Washington: Phillip Gross, Warden Hutterian Brethren, 184.29 Bu/A with LCS Jet
· 2nd Place Winter Wheat-Irrigated Washington: David Gross, Spokane Hutterian Brethren, 170.40 Bu/A with LCS Jet
· 3rd Place Winter Wheat-Irrigated Washington: Jason Beechinor, Beechinor Farms, 161.94 Bu/A with LCS Jet
· 1st Place Winter Wheat-Dryland Oregon: Jason Beechinor, Beechinor Farms, 158.33 Bu/A with LCS Jet
· 3rd Place Winter Wheat-Dryland Washington: Nathan Rea, HT Rea Farming, 148.83 Bu/A with LCS Jet
The National Wheat Foundation created the National Wheat Yield Contest in 2015 to spur wheat productivity and encourage innovation in wheat growing. The competition has grown along with yields over the years, attracting 287 farmers from across the United States this year.
“The yield program is an excellent opportunity for growers to participate in a national contest and challenge themselves to maximize yield on wheat. It’s going to encourage farmers to do a better job of maximizing resources,” asserts Rea, who adds, “LCS varieties are allowing us to maximize our resources. We don’t have to spray a second time for rust, for example. We’re getting the most bang for the buck.”
“We are delighted to see that the hard work our breeders have put in selecting varieties for U.S. conditions is beginning to pay dividends,” says Frank Curtis, COO of Limagrain Cereal Seeds, who also manages the sales and marketing of LCS varieties in the Pacific Northwest region. “This is still a very young program, and we are very excited to see just how much our varieties can achieve as it matures over the next few years.”