Arapahoe was the most popular winter wheat variety planted by Nebraska wheat producers for the 2000 crop, according to a survey recently released by the Nebraska Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS).

The survey, which is conducted each fall by NASS, is made possible through wheat checkoff funds provided by the Nebraska wheat Board.

Continuing for the eighth consecutive year as the No. 1 planted wheat variety in five out of six reporting districts, Arapahoe is noted for its winter hardiness and tillering ability. It is a medium height and maturing variety and was developed by Agricultural Research Service wheat breeders. Arapahoe has very good protein levels, test weight and milling-baking qualities. It also is resistant to stem rust and moderately resistant to leaf rust.

Alliance moved up to become the second most popular variety planted, with 15.1% of the wheat acreage, followed by Niobrara, with 10.3%. 2137 came in at fourth, with 8.2% of the acreage planted, with Pronghorn and Centura tied, at 6.9%.

Alliance is a moderately short, early maturing variety, which has fair to good winter hardiness, fair test weight, good protein and good milling-baking qualities. This variety, produced from an Arkan, Colt and Chisholm sister line cross by the University of Nebraska and ARS, has shown above-normal tolerance for crown-root rot and is moderately resistant to stem rust. It is the predominant variety planted in the northwest district.

Seeding of Niobrara declined to the third spot this year, after ranking in the second position last year. It was planted primarily in the central and southwest districts. This variety is very similar to Arapahoe and has good winter hardiness, medium height and straw strength. It has average test weight, protein and acceptable milling and baking qualities.

All of the top wheat varieties planted in Nebraska for the 2000 crop have been developed by University of Nebraska and ARS wheat breeders. The varieties are tested throughout the state before release to see how they perform, and each must pass strict quality standards as well. Nebraska wheats are known throughout the industry for their excellent quality. The Nebraska wheat Board provides funding for wheat breeding and quality evaluation through the University of Nebraska each year.

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