New forage oats variety guide out now!

Forage oat growers in Queensland and New South Wales can now plan ahead for this year’s plantings with the release of the new variety guide for 2015.

Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) senior plant breeder Bruce Winter said there would be a lot of forage oat planting again this year following a dry spring, patchy summer rainfall and limited standing pasture for the winter period.

“Forage oat growers in central and southern Queensland, as well as northern New South Wales, should be planning ahead to use improved varieties and adopt recommended management practices to increase forage growth,” he said.

“The new brochure provides guidelines to improve crops with an updated list of forage oat varieties commercially available from seed merchants.”

Mr Winter said the brochure also contained extensive agronomic and disease information that growers could use to increase productivity of forage oat crops.

“While it is less likely to be a problem in drier years, leaf rust remains the major disease problem in forage oats,” he said.

“Leaf rust can build very quickly on susceptible varieties, dramatically reducing forage yield and impacting on feed quality and palatability.

“Rust spores, which spread through the air, survive over summer on oat stubble, volunteer oat plants and wild oats and can readily infect new oat crops, particularly if planted too early in the season.

“To reduce the risk of leaf rust infection and poor establishment, growers should choose resistant varieties and only plant forage oats from mid-March through to June.

“Good nutrition is also important and the fertiliser requirement for a high yielding forage oat crop is similar to wheat.”

To find out more about leaf rust and other factors to consider when planting this year’s forage oat crops, download the forage oat variety guide 2015 by visiting or call 13 25 23 to receive a copy.

The new guide has been produced by DAF with funding from Meat and Livestock Australia.

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Media: Elise McKinna 3087 8576

27 January 2015