Improving the Quality and Profitability of Durum Wheat through Nutrient and Disease Management

Develop soil fertility (N and P) management strategies for Durum wheat, geared to maximizing production, improving grain quality, grain protein and achieving a higher grade for the grain they produce. This should increase the acceptability of our durum in world markets.


08 Feb 2005

2004 Annual Interpretive Summary

Improving the Quality and Profitability of Durum Wheat through Nutrient and Disease Management, 2004

Optimizing yield and quality of durum wheat are key to making it a profitable crop in the semi-arid regions of western Canada. While many growers are increasing the nitrogen (N) used on durum crops, they often use only minimal rates of phosphorus (P), increasing concern that they are not making full use of the N applied. Grain protein is one of the most important factors determining durum wheat quality, and premium durum markets consistently demand a protein content of 13% or higher. The objective of this research is to develop soil fertility management strategies geared to maximizing production and improving grain protein of durum wheat.

In 2002, the application of P did not affect yield or protein. However, in 2003 the application of P increased seed yield. The placement of P fertilizer in the seed row vs. side banded did not affect yield in 2002, 2003, or 2004, or protein in 2002 and 2003 (2004 data not analyzed). There was an interesting interaction between N and P on hard vitreous kernels in 2002. The addition of P at the low N rate reduced the percentage of hard vitreous kernels, and the quality of the durum grain sample harvested. This did not occur in 2003. Additions of P were required to optimize the yield response to increasing N rate in 2004. The response of yield and protein to potassium chloride (KCl) was erratic and no clear conclusion can be drawn at this time. SK-32F