Influence of variety, drilling date and seeding rate on performance of winter barley varieties grown in the presence of Barley mosaic virus


Cereals & Oilseeds
Project code:
01 September 1995 - 31 March 1999
AHDB Cereals & Oilseeds.
AHDB sector cost:
£73,772 From HGCA (Project No. 1971)
Project leader:
R Overthrow and M Carver Arable Research Centres, Manor Farm Barn, Daglingworth, Cirencester and M Adams IACR-Rothamsted



About this project


Barley Mosaic Virus (BMV) is a soil-borne virus carried by soil fungi which is present in soils, to varying degrees, in most areas of the UK. Infection of barley crops by the virus can lead to severe yield penalties. Extensive research into the problem has indicated that agronomic measures or inputs have little or no effect on virus expression or associated yield losses. The main line of defence against the disease is through genetic resistance in mv resistant or tolerant varieties. Plant breeders continually select for BMV resistance in limited numbers of varieties, and the evaluation of such varieties for agronomic performance is just as important as it is for cereal cultivation generally. In this project a number of winter barley varieties, both mv-susceptible and mv-tolerant, were sown on land infected with BMV in order to evaluate the yield penalties associated with mosaic virus in susceptible varieties, and also the yield performance of tolerant varieties when grown on infected land. In addition, the project also looked at the aspect of sowing date and variety interaction, looking at four variety 'types' (malt or feed, mv-tolerant or susceptible). Also, the element of seed rate was investigated, as an agronomic measure which had not been considered previously. Increasing the seedrate may produce a yield response in a crop whose yield potential had been restricted by virus infection. It may also be beneficial in reducing the yield penalty associated with delayed sowing, which has previously had to be balanced against the benefits of reduced virus severity seen in late sown crops.