19 June 1998

Three-way OSR hybrid coming

A NEW hybrid oilseed rape from Cargill, provisionally named Comodor, could be available for sowing in autumn next year.

And like CPB Twyfords new three-way hybrid (Arable June 5) it has outyielded varietal association Synergy.

The three-way cross avoids the high glucosinolate content associated with using a restorer gene in the so-called Ogura hybridisation system, which produces the male sterile plants in Synergy, explains the firms seed division manager Chris Black. In NIAB trials last year the new variety yielded 3% more than Synergy, he says.

Like all hybrids it has good vigour, but like conventional variety Apex and others it suffered from heavy rain-induced lodging at the event. "In my view it will be a long time before we see short, stiff hybrids, though I stand to be corrected."

lMany Midlands oilseed rape crops flattened by snow at Easter have failed to recover fully and are cause for concern, says Julian Hayes of ADAS. "There are certainly some worries that hybrids which went down will not yield well at all." Much of the Falcon pollinator in Synergy flowered long before the rest of the crop, he adds. &#42

Chris Black foresees a good future for three-way rape hybrids.