A NEW wheat variety, Tomahawk CL Plus, has been released this week by AGT as an alternative to Clearfield wheat varieties that come with a yield penalty.
Developed over the past seven years, the variety was officially launched at field days across southern Australia including the Minnipa Agricultural Centre Field Day in South Australia and the Birchip Cropping Group Main Field Day in Victoria.
Clearfield varieties across many crop types are commonly grown, and thier tolerance to imidazolinone herbicides allowsin-crop control of many weed species.
Historically, wheat varieties carrying the CL trait have yielded less than conventional wheat varieties such as Scepter.
“We have been striving to reduce the yield gap between Clearfield and conventional wheats for a long time now and have finally made a breakthrough with Tomahawk CL Plus, which has yielded towards the top of the pack, a little above Scepter,” AGT wheat breeder James Edwards said.
“Tomahawk CL Plus is derived from Scepter and carries a lot of similarities,” Dr Edwards explained.
“Other than holding an APW quality classification rather than AH, it’s extremely similar.
“If you’ve grown Scepter before, you will be very comfortable with Tomahawk CL Plus; think of Scepter’s high and stable grain size and test weight, good sprouting tolerance, wide adaptation, mid-season maturity and disease resistance package.
“These are traits that Tomahawk CL Plus holds, plus Clearfield tolerance and a nice yield bump.”
AGT manager of variety support for SA Brad Koster said he expected a wide application of the variety, including as a a direct replacement for the likes of Razor CL Plus, Chief CL Plus, Sheriff CL Plus, Grenade CL Plus and Kord CL Plus.
“I can also see it being treated as a conventional wheat too, due to its high grain yield and other agronomic advantages,” Mr Koster said.
“If you grow a paddock of Tomahawk CL Plus and don’t need to use the Clearfield herbicide in-crop, then you won’t be wishing you grew a non-Clearfield variety instead.
“There is no yield penalty by choosing to grow Tomahawk CL Plus instead of a variety like Scepter.”
In WA, AGT variety support manager Floyd Sullivan said this was the breakthrough in Clearfield wheats that growers have been looking for.
“We’ve been a bit limited with choice in the Clearfield wheat market in WA, with Chief CL Plus becoming the dominant Clearfield variety, but with a large yield penalty relative to Scepter,” Mr Sullivan said.
“Tomahawk CL Plus has been an absolute standout in AGT and NVT testing so far, and I expect it to become the clear choice for any grower looking to control weeds in-crop or as a plant-back option to mitigate the risk of imidazolinone residues.”
Tomahawk CL Plus seed is available for the 2024 season through AGT affiliates and local retailers.