NIAB - National Institute of Agricultural Botany

Back to News and Events

Changes to Forage Maize Descriptive List simplifies variety choice

03 September 2010

The NIAB 2011 Forage Maize Descriptive List has a new look following changes aimed at simplifying the variety choice process for growers.

The most significant change is the amalgamation of the Medium Early List and the Favourable List followed by a more vigorous selection of first choice forage maize varieties, explains NIAB’s Herbage and Forage specialist Don Pendergrast.

“The modifications have been made in response to feedback from growers asking for fewer lists and a smaller number of first choice varieties. But they still wanted a good range of variety choice and lists that represent key UK growing conditions,” says Mr Pendergrast.

Growers now have two lists of first choice varieties to consider:

• Marginal - for situations where reaching a good percentage dry matter is key; and
• Favourable - capable of growing a range of maturity classes, but key is the ability to drill a following crop and/or the percentage of maize in the ration.

With only one Favourable List variety selection will be more straightforward. In the past growers had to compare varieties, and their traits, across two different lists.

This year selection of first choice forage maize varieties has been more vigorous than ever; falling to 35 varieties on the Less Favourable List and 40 on the Favourable List. This is a drop of 40% compared to 2008 when there were 58 first choice varieties on the Less Favourable List.

The 2011 NIAB Descriptive List includes seven new varieties for use in favourable and less favourable growing locations, and two new varieties for favourable locations where the best maize yields are available.

“Of particular note for those in a favourable location looking for big energy yields are NK Baleric and Atrium. Both raise the standard in terms of energy yield (NK Baleric) and energy density (Atrium). For growers in less favourable conditions, or situations requiring early harvest, Kougar offers an unparalleled yield, whilst Kentaurus offers a great balance of yield and quality, outstripping anything of similar maturity,” advises Mr Pendergrast.

For use in favourable and less favourable growing locations

 

Variety

Maturity
Class

Comments

Breeder

KENTAURUS

11/12

Very early variety with excellent yield and quality for its maturity out performing any near competitors

KWS UK

KOUGAR

9

Early variety with outstanding yield potential resulting starch and ME yields well above other similar maturing varieties

Huntseeds

LG31.81

8/9

Early variety offering good all round performance for growers looking for a good early performer

Limagrain

NK Cheer

8

This variety offers excellent yield potential for its maturity and good all-round performance

Syngenta Seeds

Abbot

8

This variety offers excellent yield potential for its maturity and good all-round performance

Limagrain

Utopia

7

Offers very good energy content and starch content for those looking for energy rich feed

Syngenta Seeds

MAS10C

7

Offers good all-round performance in all characteristics

Maisadour

 

For use in favourable growing locations

 

Variety

Maturity
Class

Comments

Breeder

ATRIUM

6

Outstanding energy content combined with good starch content (for maturity), good yields and agronomy results in an excellent feed variety well suited to use as a larger part of the ration

Limagrain

NK BALERIC

4

Later variety with high yield and good quality resulting in best ME yields on the Descriptive List. Great option if you are feeding maize as main part of ration

Syngenta Seeds

 

For further information
Don Pendergrast, Herbage and Forage Specialist, NIAB
T: 01223 342348
M: 07809 583459
E: don.pendergrast@niab.com 

Issued by:
Ros Lloyd, FrontFoot Communications
T: 01487 831425
M: 07711 568164
E: ros.lloyd@frontfoot.uk.com