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Plant production

Schaub L., Breitenmoser St.

Development and validation of a phenological model for the european corn borer

A phenological model for the European corn borer Ostrinia nubilalis Hübner race with one generation per year was developed and validated by Agroscope. This model replaces the previous time-consuming method for predicting the optimal time for implementing measures to control the corn borer (Derron and Goy 2006). The conventional method consists in predicting the flight…
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Plant production

Brunner S., Vetterli Ch., Krebs H., Hebeisen Th., Romeis J., Winzeler M.

GM potato plants are resistant to late blight

Late blight of potato, caused by the pathogen Phytophthora infestans, is the most significant disease in potato cultivation. Large quantities of fungicides are used to control this disease. New, resistant varieties of potato have heretofore not caught on, owing to deficiencies in agronomic traits or tuber characteristics compared to the established breeds. Agroscope studied genetically…
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Plant production

Herzog Ch., Anderegg J., Luginbühl C., Stettler P., Hiltbrunner J.

Nitrogen fertilisation of linseed influences seed yield and oil quality

Despite the oilseed production payment, linseed has remained a relatively unimportant oil plant in Switzerland. Nitrogen (N) fertilisation is a core component of linseed cultivation, since linseed is considered to be a fairly undemanding crop, yet one that is susceptible to lodging when over-fertilised with N. With the aim of studying the reaction of recently…
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Plant production

Kägi A., Loeu F., Musa T., Jenny E., Wettstein F. E., Bucheli Th. D., Vogelgsang S.

Fusarium species and mycotoxins in silage maize – results of a five-year monitoring programme

within the context of a five-year silage maize monitoring programme (2010–2014) in the cantons of Aargau and Bern, Agroscope investigated Fusarium infection and mycotoxin contamination of silage maize, as well as the influence of cropping factors including variety, previous crop, tillage, and sowing and harvest dates. Out of 169 harvest samples, 167 showed a mean…
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Plant production

Mascher F., Bertschi C., Fesselet M., Schori A., Schierscher-Viret B., Mayor J.-P.

Aptitude of emmer and einkorn varieties for cultivation

Though suitable for breadmaking, einkorn and emmer wheat are hulled grains that are nowadays largely neglected. These cereals are frugal and robust and characterised by high levels of minerals and other elements beneficial for health in the grain. Cultivation of these cereals is feasible, but in-depth knowledge of their agronomic and technical values is indispensable.…
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Plant production

Kellerhals M., Schütz S., Baumgartner I., Lussi L., Andreoli R., Patocchi A.

Agroscope apple breeding: methods, results and opportunities for sustainable fruit production

Agroscope apple breeding develops new varieties adapted to the current and future requirements of resilient fruit production. The latest developments in breeding methodology are constantly implemented in order to streamline selection as much as possible. Breeding research at Agroscope, our collaboration with the Chair in Plant Breeding at ETH Zürich and international networking allow for…
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Plant production

Schumpp O., Dupuis B., Bréchon A., Wild W., Frei P., Pellet D., Schaerer S.

High-throughput molecular diagnostics for detecting potato-plant viruses

Every year, Agroscope inspects almost 300 000 tubers for the presence or absence of viruses in order to certify potato plants destined for Swiss producers. From 2016 onwards, this inspection has been performed using real time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) on dormant tubers right after the harvest. The new method allows results to be obtained…
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Plant production

Micheneau M., Champolivier L., Courtois N., Sinaj S., Baux A.

Réglette azote colza®: a decision support tool for rapeseed N management adapted for Switzerland

The Réglette azote colza® is a decision support tool for rapeseed nitrogen fertilization, developed by the French institute Terres Inovia. This tool was designed to determine the nitrogen dose the most adapted to the needs of the crop, based on the rapeseed status at the beginning and at the end of the winter. The parameters…
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Plant production

Schirdewahn T., Mascher F., Bucheli Th., Bertossa M., Musa T., Wettstein F.E., Keller B., Vogelgsang S.

Cultivation factors influence Fusarium fungi and mycotoxins in Swiss barley

During a 2-year monitoring we observed that the occurrence of Fusarium graminearum and the mycotoxin deoxynivalenol are influenced by several cropping factors. Frequently, not only one but the combination of different factors have to be considered e.g. previous crop and tillage. Thus, the entire cropping system should be taken into consideration to retrieve influencing cropping…
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Plant production

Levy L., Courvoisier N., Herrera J., Brabant C., Pellet D.

Protein potential of winter wheat varieties

A ‘protein potential’ concept has been developed by analogy with the ‘grain yield’ concept, with the aim of better understanding the factors influencing wheat protein content and identifying the most stable varieties as well as the amount of protein that remains to be reached. The protein potential of 18 varieties of winter wheat covering all…
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Plant production

Vuffray Z., Deléglise C., Amaudruz M., Jeangros B., Mosimann E., Meisser M.

Phenological development of meadows – 21 years of observations

In spring, the phenological development of meadows influences forage quality, particularly in terms of the digestibility of organic matter. Thus, phenological observations facilitate grassland management during first grass growth. Since vegetation development depends largely on meteorological conditions, long-term phenological monitoring also enables the effects of climate change on vegetation to be assessed. The aim of…
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Plant production

Roger A., Pluchon S., Yvin J-C., Benbrahim M., Kremer L., Sinaj S.

Effects of a new phosphate fertiliser on wheat nutrition and yield

Phosphorus (P) is an essential mineral for plant growth. Given that easily extractable global stocks of P are declining and that P over-fertilisation can be a source of pollution, it would appear necessary to improve the efficiency of phosphate fertilisers in agriculture. Two independent experiments were carried out at Agroscope Changins (Switzerland) and RITTMO-Colmar (France)…
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Plant production

Suter D., Rainer F., Hirschi H., Aebi Ph.

Timothy: two new varieties recommended

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…
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Plant production

Grieder Ch., Tanner P., Schubiger F.-X., Boller B.

Improved performance thanks to sex: Agroscope’s new Kentucky bluegrass varieties

The year 2014 marked the first occasion when two varieties of Kentucky bluegrass (Poa pratensis) from Agroscope’s breeding programme, Selista and Sepia, were included in the Swiss List of Recommended Varieties for Forage Plants. Instead of exhibiting the otherwise usual asexual seed formation (‘apomixis’), Selista and Sepia primarily reproduce sexually, like the known variety Lato.…
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Plant production

Villacrés de Papajewski D., Grisot E., Bétrix C.-A., Schori A., Mascher F.

Creating a test to measure resistance to soybean

Bacterial blight is a foliar disease caused by Pseudomonas savastanoi pv. glycinea. The disease is characterised by angular leaf spots yet with only little impact on the yield. The seeds constitute the primary source of inoculum, and contaminated seeds may affect the diffusion of new varieties. The best approach to preventing the disease is to…
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Plant production

Büchi L., Mouly P., Amossé C., Bally C., Wendling M., Charles R.

Non-destructive method for estimating cover-crop biomass

This study presents a non-destructive method for estimating cover-crop biomass, based on field estimation of soil cover and cover height. The estimation of biomass allows to quantify expected services offered by cover crops, such as competition against weed, erosion and leaching reduction, input of nutrients and organic matter. Linear models were adjusted to the data…
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Plant production

Ramseier H., Lebrun M., Steinger T.

Use of economic damage thresholds, forecasting systems and warning services in Switzerland

According to Direct Payment regulations, Swiss farmers are obliged to take into account economic damage thresholds and the recommendations of forecasting and warning services before taking phytosanitary measures. In order to assess how well these requirements were being fulfilled in arable farming, farmers and agricultural contractors were anonymously surveyed in 2013-2014. Out of 477 returned…
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Plant production

Brabant C., Levy Häner L.

Influence of splitting the application of nitrogenous fertilisers on the baking quality of wheat

Certain types of bread products require a high protein content and well-defined rheological qualities. Although Swiss wheat varieties have a high protein content, said content fluctuates a great deal, and in some years is too low for breadmaking. From 2011 to 2013, a study was carried out on four varieties of wheat and seven nitrogen…
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Plant production

Suter D., Frick R., Hirschi H., Aebi P.

New varieties of Westerwolds ryegrass and persian clover recommended

From 2013 to 2015, Agroscope tested 33 varieties of Westerwolds ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum Lam. var. westerwoldicum Mansh.) and five varieties of Persian clover (Trifolium resupinatum L.) as to their suitability for cultivation. Yield, vigour, persistence, resistance to leaf diseases, dry-matter content and competitive ability were evaluated. In the case of Westerwolds ryegrass, digestible organicmatter content…
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Plant production

Schürch S.

Fusarium infection in maize: evaluating the susceptibility of varieties cultivated in Switzerland

Gibberella and fusarium ear rot of maize reduce grain yield qualitatively and quantitatively. Mycotoxins produced by the fungal pathogens that are responsible of these two diseases are a health threat for the animals fed with contaminated maize. One factor affecting disease severity and mycotoxin content, and therefore a potential management tool, is the susceptibility of…