Advances in pea yields and earlier maturity in spring beans were among the standout developments on the latest PGRO Recommended Lists for combining peas and winter and spring beans.
In the combining pea category, white-seeded variety Manager gains a full recommendation for 2020. Yields at 105 are just ahead of Karpate (104), the highest yielding fully recommended white pea.
Kameleon and Orchestra both gain a provisional (P1) recommendation for 2020. With a yield rating of 106, Orchestra is just ahead of Manager in terms of yield but has a rather low rating for downy mildew resistance (4).
With a yield rating of, Kameleon now tops the list for yield in the combining pea category.
PGRO principal technical officer Steve Belcher said: “The yield performance of Kameleon was exceptional, outyielding its nearest rival, the large blue Kactus, by 7 per cent.”
Kameleon has relatively early maturity, stands reasonably well and has a downy mildew rating of 5.
In other changes to the Recommended List, large blue peas Bluetime, Karioka and Blueman all gain full recommendation for 2020. Mankato and Croft move from P1 to P2 recommendation.
New for 2020 are Kactus, Greenwich and LG Aviator. Kactus tops the yield rankings among the large blues with a yield rating of 107. Kactus and Aviator show good tolerance to downy mildew with a rating of 7, just one point off Blueman’s top 8 rating.
Marrowfats Banshee and Octavia join the new list with yield ratings of 83 and 82, just behind list-topping Sakura at 84.
Variety choice among winter beans remains unchanged but having had two very good years in trials, Vespa gains a full recommendation for 2020 and becomes top yielding variety with a yield rating of 108.
In the spring bean category Mallory gains a full recommendation for 2020. Mallory’s yields at 98 are four percentage points lower than list-topper Lynx (102) and it has the same good 7 rating for downy mildew rating as Lynx.
In other changes Macho, LG Raptor, Ghengis and Yukon all gain a provisional P1 recommendation for 2020. Macho and Raptor are the highest yielding of this group, with a yield rating of 100, while Ghengis is rated at 99.
Yukon, with a yield rating of 92, has relatively lower yields but very early maturity (9) and very good downy mildew resistance (8).
Low vicine/covicine beans Victus and Tiffany move from P1 to P2 recommendation.
The 2019 season was especially difficult for spring sown crops. Early sown trials at the PGRO’s main trials site at Stubton, Lincolnshire established well but subsequently struggled in the dry spring.
PGRO principal technical officer Steve Belcher said: “With only 5.4mm of rainfall during the six weeks mid-March to April 23, even crop establishment became increasingly difficult, with double emergence of some later sown trials. In more northern areas, drilling was delayed because of wet conditions.”
Only four combining pea trials were added to the Recommended List matrix. Mean yields at 5.02t/ha were up on the five year average (4.02t/ha). The highest yield (5.26t/ha) came from a site in Lincolnshire.
“Beans trials established well in the autumn and trials looked better than they have for a number of years,” said Mr Belcher.
Chocolate spot and rust were at seen at higher levels in 2019. Yields at 5.09t/ha were slightly up on the five year average of 5.01t/ha. Five trials were added to the RL matrix and the top-yielding site was, for the second year, in Herefordshire, with a yield of 6.27t/ha.
Nine spring bean trials were taken through to harvest and, as with winter beans, the site in Herefordshire once again delivered the highest yield (6.07/ha). Mean 2019 trials yield was lower than the five year (5.12t/ha) average at 5.07t/ha.
White-seeded peas: Kameleon, Orchestra
Large blue peas: Kactus, Greenwich, LG Aviator
Spring beans: Macho, LG Raptor, Ghengis, Yukon