The information contained in this publication is based on knowledge and understanding at the time of writing (July 2016) and may not be accurate, current or complete. The State of New South Wales (including the NSW Department of Industry), the author and the publisher take no responsibility, and will accept no liability, for the accuracy, currency, reliability or correctness of any information included in the document (including material provided by third parties). Readers should make their own inquiries and rely on their own advice when making decisions related to material contained in this publication. The product trade names in this publication are supplied on the understanding that no preference between equivalent products is intended and that the inclusion of a product name does not imply endorsement by the department over any equivalent product from another manufacturer.
Loretta Serafin, Mark Hellyer and Peter Perfrement, NSW DPI
|Contributor||Department of Primary Industries NSW|
Site 3, Gurley, NSW
|Further information||View external link|
Optimising sunflower performance relies on being able to match a hybrid with the growing environment and ensuring that the most suitable agronomic management is provided. Suitable crop agronomy involves using the most appropriate row configuration and plant population as well as ensuring adequate nutrition, disease and insect management. This experiment and others conducted in this series were designed to provide recommendations for growers and advisors to support decisions on optimal row configuration, plant population and hybrids for sunflower production in the north-western and Liverpool Plains regions of NSW. These two environments are the primary sunflower growing regions in northern NSW.
|Lead research organisation||
Department of Primary Industries NSW
|Host research organisation||N/A|
|Trial funding source||GRDC DAN00197|
|Trial funding source||DPI NSW DAN00197|
Tactical agronomy for selected crops in the northern region (safflower, linseed, sunflower)
This experiment was part of the project Tactical agronomy for selected crops in the northern region (safflower, linseed, sunflower) (DAN00197), with joint investment by NSW DPI and GRDC. Technical assistance provided by Delphi Ramsden, Angus Hombsch, Alice Bowler and Bronwyn Brennan (NSW DPI) is gratefully acknowledged. Thanks to Doug Clark, ‘Kyntyre’, Gurley for hosting the experiment.
|Other trial partners||Doug Clark, ‘Kyntyre’, Gurley|
|Crop type||Oilseed: Sunflower|
|Sow rate or Target density||15,000 plants/ha 25,000 plants/ha or 35,000 plants/ha|
|Sowing machinery||Not specified|
|Sow date||9 September 2015|
|Harvest date||23 February 2016|
|Plot size||Not specified|
|Plot replication||Not specified|
|Plot blocking||Not specified|
|Plot randomisation||Not specified|
|Paddock history||Not specified|
42 kg/ha Granulock Z applied at sowing
|Soil amelioration||Not specified|
|Seed treatment||Not specified|
|Other trial notes||
Starting soil water and rainfall
The site was soil cored before sowing and found to have 103 mm of plant available water (PAW) to a depth of 1.2 m. A total of 284.5 mm of in- crop rainfall was recorded at the site (Table 2). This was largely received as one large fall of over 50 mm in mid-November and another large fall of 68.5 mm in early January. The intensity of these summer storm events meant the rainfall was not effective, as a large amount of rain was lost as runoff.
Five plants in each plot were measured for height, taken from ground level up to the point of attachment at the back of the head. There was no difference in plant height between the hybrids, plant populations or row configurations. The average plant height in the experiment was 152 cm.
Head diameter and arc length:
The head diameter and arc length of five plants in each plot was measured. Head diameter was measured across the back of the head and arc length across the front face of the head. Plant population and hybrid selection both caused significant differences in both parameters. Head diameters averaged 11.8 cm, indicating that yields were likely to be reasonably low. Head diameters decreased as the plant populations increased, with significant differences between each plant population. There were also differences between the hybrids. Ausigold 62 and Ausigold 4 were not different from each other with head diameters of 13.0 cm and 12.3 cm respectively, but both were larger than Ausistripe 14 at 10.2 cm. Head arc lengths decreased as plant populations increased. In contrast to the head diameters, Ausistripe 14 had the longest arc length at 19.7 cm, followed by Ausigold 4 at 18.3 cm and Ausigold 62 at 17.5 cm. As Ausistripe 14 is a confectionary hybrid, the seeds are typically longer, resulting in a more rounded head shape.
Sunflower yields were very low at this site in 2015–16 with an average of 0.56 t/ha. The coefficient of variation for grain yield was very high and, as such, no other grain yield results can be reported as the level of variability in the data was too high.
Sub samples from each plot were collected at harvest and analysed for 1000 grain weight and test weight. Plant population and hybrid selection caused significant differences in 1000 grain weight. The 1000 grain weight decreased as plant population increased. Ausistripe 14 had the highest 1000 grain weight and test weight, although its test weight was not significantly different from Ausigold 62 . Oil contents were not available at the time of writing.
|#||Plant establishment (plants/ha)||Target plant population (plants/ha)|
||1000 grain weight (g)||Test weight (kg/hL)|
|1||█ Ausigold 4||41||35.8|
|2||█ Ausigold 62||38.1||38.3|
|3||█ Ausistripe 14||44.4||39.7|
|LSD||(P=0.05%) 1.26||(P=0.05%) 3.09|
|Rainfall avg ann (mm)||603mm|
|Rainfall avg gsr (mm)||383.4mm|
|Rainfall trial gsr (mm)||284.5mm|
SILO weather estimates sourced from https://www.longpaddock.qld.gov.au/silo/
Jeffrey, S.J., Carter, J.O., Moodie, K.B. and Beswick, A.R. (2001). Using spatial interpolation to construct a comprehensive archive of Australian climate data , Environmental Modelling and Software, Vol 16/4, pp 309-330. DOI: 10.1016/S1364-8152(01)00008-1.