Between 2013 and 2015, Agroscope field-tested a total of 21 varieties of timothy (Phleum pratense) as to their suitability for cultivation. Seven of these varieties had already been recommended and served as benchmarks in the trial, whilst simultaneously being required to pass the test again. Yield and digestibility, vigour (density, luxuriance and evenness of the stand), juvenile development, persistence ( vigour at the end of the test period), resistance to leaf diseases, winter-hardiness and competitive ability were all evaluated. Based on good trial results, two new varieties have recently been included in the List of Recommended Varieties of Forage Plants: Polarking, which scored impressively under the important headings of yield, vigour, persistence, digestibility and competitive ability, and Summergraze, with above-average performances in yield, vigour, persistence, and suitability for cultivation at higher altitudes. Owing to its extremely weak yield performance, the hitherto recommended variety Moverdi is being deleted from the List.
Herbicide-resistant weeds are a growing problem throughout the world. Monitoring herbicide resistance in Switzerland allows us to understand the mechanisms behind it and to better manage the use of herbicides.
Agroscope compared crop protection strategies in apple production. Reducing the use of plant-protection products lowered the local ecotoxological risks, but resulted in trade-offs between environmental and economic performance.
Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) bacterium proteins protect Bt maize from being fed on by specific insects. A new, systematic analysis of international field data confirms that non-target organisms in Bt maize are largely spared.