SUNLIN an export contender... by Bernie Reppel

Graingrowers received another dividend on the funds they invest in the Grains Research and Development Corporation's Northern Wheat Improvement Program with the release of the Prime Hard cultivar Sunlin.

Bred by Frank Ellison at the University of Sydney's Plant Breeding Institute in Narrabri, the awnless Sunlin combines characteristics of Kite and Sunelg. It adds further flexibility to the suite of Prime Hard wheat cultivars available to graingrowers in the north-eastern wheatbelt.

Dr Ellison said Sunlin appears to meet the exacting milling, dough-handling and bread- or noodle-making requirements of Australia's major export customers in south-east Asia. "Sunlin was trialed extensively in northern NSW between 1991 and 1995, and results indicate this variety can accommodate a wide range of sowing opportunities, from mid-April to late June."

Dr Ellison said at early sowing dates Sunlin had proven equal or superior in yield ability to Kite, Sunelg, Batavia and Sunbri, though inferior to Sunbrook and Sunmist.

In main season sowing Sunlin's yields had been comparable to Hartog, Sunstate and Sunvale, with this group of cultivars conceding 3-7 per cent in yield to Janz

Rust resistance, of course

Dr Ellison says Sunlin parents Kite and Sunelg varieties are limited in their grain quality — particularly milling performance — restricting them to the Australian Hard category. While outstripping them in quality, the new variety retained many of the parents' positive characteristics. This included a high level of resistance to all three rusts.

Sunlin also displayed a useful level of tolerance to both crown rot and yellow leaf spot, and a high level of resistance to common root rot, all attributes which helped minimise grower production risks.

Subprogram 1.6.1 Contact: Dr Frank Ellison 067 921 588