Rain at harvest can affect lupin germinatio

Posted in Agronomy alert on Dec 18, 2015

Seed testing for germination percentage and cucumber mosaic virus is essential for lupin seed after rain affected harvest and high aphid activity in 2015.

Rain at harvest can affect lupin germination

Test your seed now!

We all know that establishing a crop in the best possible way is the foundation for high yield potential. Any compromise at establishment reduces the chance of profitable yields.

Lupins are no different in this regard. Rain after maturity can cause reduced germination and vigour. Each rain event increases the problem.

This season we have seen a report of lupins being reduced from 90% germination to just 51% after 40 mm of rain. In past years, low germination in lupins after a wet harvest has been common.

The message is clear—get your seed tested, and do it now. Use a professional service, not on the kitchen shelf in cotton wool. If the germination rate is low, you have time to do something about it. Leaving the test until April doesn’t leave any time to find a solution to a problem.

Regardless of rain, testing is essential as you’ll get a reading of the seed content of CMV (Cucumber Mosaic Virus) as well. Aphids along the west coast were hard to control this year and CMV levels may be higher than usual as a consequence. We control CMV through shading of the infected plants by the healthy plants. If you have a low germination that results in a thin stand, aphids will find the stunted CMV plants and spread the infection.

You need to know the germination rate of your seed as a matter of course, but this year with many storms dropping rain on mature lupins, it is imperative that a seed germination test be conducted.

Poor germination usually also means poor vigour, which will reduce competition with weeds – reduce the ability to cope with herbicides – the ability to cope with sub-optimal soil moisture at sowing and accidents like deep planting.

Germination and disease testing is available through AgWest Plant Laboratories

AGWEST Seed analysis request form

For more information please contact Alan Meldrum, Pulse Australia (Industry Development Manager – Western) P: 0427 384 760

Visit Pulse Australia

Pulse Australia blog home | Subscribe