2009 Official Coded Variety Trials

November 2009

Dear ACSC Sugarbeet Grower:

View Trial Procedures

View Official Trial Location Sites

The 2009 official coded variety performance trials and disease nurseries were planted at 19 sites by American Crystal Sugar Company (ACSC) and included 13 yield trial sites. Thanks are extended to the dedicated Technical Services staff involved in official trial plot care, harvest, and analyses.

Results from the Official Variety Trials sites were good to excellent. Yield losses with rhizomania susceptible commercial checks ranged from light to severe. Aphanomyces was less prevalent in the 2009 trials than in previous years. Revenue calculations in 2009 are based on a hypothetical $42.40 payment at 17.5% sugar and 1.5% SLM and do not consider hauling costs.

Fusarium evaluation was conducted at two Moorhead sites. TheRhizoctonia data is from Ft. Collins USDA. The Aphanomyces data is from Shakopee and Kindred. The Cercospora data is from Rosemount, Michigan, and Foxhome. The Hickson Rhizoctonia, MoorheadRhizoctonia and RRV irrigated Aphanomyces nurseries were abandoned due to light and erratic disease infection.

The 2009 data has been combined with the previous years' data, and results are enclosed. Data has been combined from sites with similar rhizomania severity (light or moderate to severe). Rhizoctonia andFusarium ratings are optional on conventional and first year Roundup Ready® (RR) entries. The most severe disease symptoms were noted at Averill (Rhizomania) and Kindred (Aphanomyces). Results for these and other individual sites can be found on the internet. There were noAphanomyces yield trials for conventional varieties in 2009.

In January 2009, the ACSC Seed Committee exempted the currently approved conventional varieties from continued variety testing - 31 conventional varieties are approved for sale in 2010; 24 of these varieties were not tested in 2009 yield trials. Data for all approved varieties can be found in Table 9 (2008 data).

More detailed information will be printed later in the Sugarbeet Research and Extension Reports (www.sbreb.org). This information is available on the World Wide Web two to three days before the mail arrives. Additional data including individual yield trial results and agronomic procedures are also on the ACSC web site. We are considering eliminating the mailing of copies in the future.

Click here to open a pdf file with the following information:

  1. List of varieties approved for sale to ACSC growers
  2. Multi-year performance of RR varieties from ALL SITES (with emergence)
  3. Multi-year (where available) performance of conventional varieties from ALL SITES (with emergence)
  4. Multi-year performance of RR varieties under various Rzm levels
  5. Multi-year performance of RR varieties under various Rzm levels
  6. Multi-year (where available) performance of conventional varieties under various Rzm levels
  7. Multi-year (where available) performance of conventional varieties under various Rzm levels
  8. Two-year performance of RR Aphanomyces specialty approved varieties
  9. 2008 performance of ALL approved varieties (RR and conventional)
  10. Trial sites, disease observations and agronomic information from all trial locations

Download Trials in Excel format

Links to 2009 data only follow:

Plot Procedures
Roundup Ready, Conventional and Aphanomyces trials were planted to stand at 4.5 inches. Four sites (Buxton, Crookston, Hamilton and Scandia) were abandoned due to non-uniform emergence and poor growth. Hendrum was abandoned due to wet harvest conditions.

Plots were planted crosswise (90°) to the cooperators' normal farming operations, where possible. Plot row lengths for all official trials were maintained at 44 feet with about 37 feet harvested. All trials had two or four-row plots planted in four or six replications. Planting was performed with two vacuum planters, which included a 12-row Hege and a modified 12-row Heath. These planters gave good single seed spacing which facilitated emergence counts and thinning. Emergence counts were taken on one 44 foot row of each plot. Multiple seedlings were counted as a single plant if they emerged less than one inch apart. The stands in all yield trials were refined by removing doubles (multiple seedlings less than 1.5 inch apart) by hand but were not further reduced.

Micro rate herbicides, Roundup Weathermax with Weather Gard and full rates of fungicides were applied using a pickup sprayer driven down the alleys. Hand weeding was used where necessary. All yield trials were treated with Quadris during the 4 to 12 leaf stage (since 2004) for Rhizoctonia control. Headline was the only Cercospora control used in 2009. Ground spraying was conducted by ACSC technical staff.

RR varieties were evaluated in separate trials adjacent to conventional herbicide variety trials. RR varieties with commercial seed were planted in four-row, six replication trials. Two applications of Roundup were made in the 4-6 (32 oz) and 8-12 (22 oz) leaf stages. The RR experimental and conventional entries were planted in smaller two-row, four replication trials.

All plot rows were measured for total length after approximately 2.5 feet at each end were removed at the end of August, with skips greater than 60 inches being measured for adjustment purposes. Harvest was performed with two modified four-row harvesters (4310 and 4310A John Deere). All harvested beets of each plot were used for yield determination while one sample (22 lbs) for sugar and impurity analysis was obtained from each plot. Quality analysis was performed at the ACSC Technical Services quality lab in Moorhead.

Varieties were planted in disease nurseries in North Dakota, Minnesota, Michigan and Colorado to evaluate varieties for disease tolerance.

ACSC adjusts the Cercospora, Aphanomyces and Fusarium nursery data each year to provide a consistent target for variety approval criteria. With three years of data, we had enough information to adjust the Rhizoctonia ratings to provide a consistent target for variety approval. In 2009, the Rhizoctonia ratings from 2007 and 2008 were adjusted to the average infection level of the 2007-2009 nurseries. The 2008 Moorhead Rhizoctonia nursery had a lighter infection level, so the 2008 ratings were adjusted upwards by 65%. (eg. Crystal 658RR’s original 2008 rating was 1.8 + 65% adjustment = 2.9 adjusted rating).

Before purchasing seed, please check to make sure the varieties you are buying are on the current approved list. In accordance with the grower contract, the cooperative has the option to refuse to purchase beets of a non-approved variety. If you have questions, please contact the ACSC Technical Services Center or your ACSC Agriculture Department.

William S. Niehaus
Official Trial Manager