Producers Strike Gold with OSU Wheat Varieties

Oklahoma State University (OSU) varieties continue to lead planted acres of Hard Red Winter Wheat across the state of Oklahoma, according to the March 2023 “Oklahoma Variety Report” from USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service.  For the fifth year in a row, the top four leading wheat varieties planted in the state were developed by OSU with another three listed in the top nine.  

Doublestop CL Plus variety takes the top spot for the second year in a row, with Smith’s Gold moving from the fourth position last year into the number two spot this year.  Gallagher and Green Hammer varieties move into the third and fourth spots.  The Showdown variety makes a great leap moving from 24th last year to 6th place this year.  It should be no surprise to see the movement in Showdown, as it is widely adapted from west Texas to central Kansas, including the Oklahoma panhandle and has a very high yield ceiling.  Showdown shows good standability and responds well to grazing with adequate seed density.  Showdown also incorporates Hessian fly resistance.  Also, in the number 9 spot OK Corral the OSU beardless variety that is great for grazing as well as grain and has been a favorable replacement for Deliver.

The OSU varieties offer a genetically diverse portfolio with wide adaptations across most regions of the state. Producers looking for high yielding varieties with the Gold n Grain trademark provide the best qualities for millers and bakers. (One message rings loud and clear, based on Wheat Quality Council and preferred variety lists, millers and bakers are sourcing from Oklahoma for the most suitable wheat quality.) Other core varieties for producer use include Bentley and Iba

Newer OSU varieties released in 2020, broke into the survey this year with significant gains in acreage. These include Butler’s Gold, a short season wheat that gives more options to producers growing multiple crops.  Strad CL Plus follows right in line and is known as the Doublestop CL Plus upgrade for straw strength, forage production and maturity.  The Uncharted variety comes in soon after with its significant breakthrough in Barley Yellow Dwarf protection and novel leaf rust resistance.  Also listed is Baker’s Ann, a premium-quality wheat variety well suited for quality-based contract production at a yield potential comparable to Green Hammer.  

Baker’s Ann exhibits very strong resistance to stripe rust across a wide geography, though protection against a severe infection of leaf rust may need to be bolstered with a fungicide application. It will fit best in the Oklahoma panhandle and north central Oklahoma.

Newer Releases for the Future

To learn more about the newest OSU wheat variety just released this month named High Cotton, click here

What does High Cotton have to offer?

  • The increased yield of this variety is expected to offset potential declines in planted wheat acreage in the future and help maintain the nation’s current food supply.
  • With yield, High Cotton exceeds Showdown, Smith’s Gold, Bentley and Gallagher wheat varieties by 5 to 13 bushels per acre. It performed at 17% above average in OSU statewide yield trials.
  • Its test weight has averaged 1.2 pounds per bushel above the average research trials, and the Wheat Quality Council found it to have acceptable milling and baking attributes.
  • It has dual resistance to leaf and stripe rust as well as resistance to other common wheat diseases in Oklahoma.
  • High Cotton is a dual-purpose wheat that provides early grazing opportunities while sustaining winter dormancy.

Thanks to wheat improvement programs like the one at OSU, producers continue to have improved and expanded options of wheat varieties to plant.  Whether it is improved stress or pest tolerance or increased yields coupled with end-use quality expected by our food industry, the Oklahoma Wheat Improvement Team at OSU is working to develop varieties that are meeting producers’ changing needs.

Most importantly, OSU wheat varieties are locally adapted but globally marketed.

It is important to note the varieties released by the Wheat Improvement Team at OSU have been through several years of testing for quality-based attributes that domestic and foreign customers expect in their milling and baking operations.  Variety development programs that rush a variety to release may not provide the same level of scrutiny for end-use performance. By finding important traits that are beneficial to grain buyers, the OSU Wheat Improvement Team is also working to penetrate a wider segment in the food sector by creating varieties that have dual benefit to farmers and end users.

For the 2023 USDA Oklahoma Wheat Variety Survey, click here.