Submitted to: Sugar Bulletin
Publication Type: Trade Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: June 18, 2012
Publication Date: July 20, 2012
Citation: White, W.H. 2012. Notice of release of sugarcane variety Ho 05-961. Sugar Bulletin. 90(10):23-24. Technical Abstract: The release of high-yielding varieties to growers is important to the sustainability of all commodity industries. To that end, the Agricultural Research Service of the United States Department of Agriculture, the Louisiana Agricultural Experiment Station of the LSU Agricultural Center, and the American Sugar Cane League of the U.S.A., Inc., working cooperatively to develop improved sugarcane varieties, have jointly developed and hereby announce the release of a new sugarcane variety, Ho 05-961, for commercial planting in the summer of 2012. Ho 05-961 is a product of a cross between CP 83-644 and TucCP 77-42 made at Houma (Ho), Louisiana in 2000. Ho 05-961 is a product of a cross between CP 83-644 and TucCP 77-42 made at Houma (Ho), Louisiana in 2000. The variety Ho 05-961 compares well in yield with the variety HoCP 96-540, the prominent sugarcane variety currently being grown in Louisiana. In comparisons with HoCP 96-540 in 32 plant-cane outfield evaluations, Ho 05-961 was statistically equal in sugar/acre (9481 vs. 9216 lbs.), cane/acre yields (33.1 vs. 33.3 tons), and sugar/ton cane (287 vs 277 lbs.). It had a statistically greater number of stalks/acre (28,827 vs. 25,798), but its individual stalk weight was less (2.34 vs. 2.63 lbs.). In 21 first-stubble outfield evaluations, Ho 05-961 equaled the yields of HoCP 96-540 in sugar/acre (8242 vs. 8225 lbs.) and cane/acre (27.7 vs. 28.7 tons), but produced significantly higher sugar/ton of cane (297 vs. 286 lbs.). The stalk population of Ho 05-961 was again greater than HoCP 96-540 (28,887 vs. 26,564 stalks per acre), but its stalk weight was significantly less (1.94 vs. 2.22 lbs.). In 11 second-stubble outfield evaluations, Ho 05-961 was comparable to HoCP 96-540 in sugar/acre (6780 vs. 7026 lbs.), but significantly lower in tons of cane/acre (23.5 vs. 25.7 tons). However, Ho 05-961 had greater sugar/ton of cane (290 vs. 280 lbs.), but comparable stalks/acre (30,038 vs. 26,492). Again, Ho 05-961 had significantly lower stalk weight than did HoCP 96-540 (1.52 vs. 1.73 lbs.). Fiber levels from 44 evaluations averaged 12.9% fiber for Ho 05-961. This value is 110% of HoCP 96-540. Data from outfield trials indicated that Ho 05-961 will be a moderate stubbling variety. Ho 05-961 is moderately resistant to smut caused by Ustilago scitaminea and leaf scald caused by Xanthomonas albilineans based on disease incidence in inoculated trials. Ho 05-961 had a lower observable incident of brown rust caused by Puccinia melanocephala than noted in other varieties and is therefore thought to possess some resistance to this disease. However, data collected from yield reduction studies indicate that Ho 05-961 is susceptible to ratoon stunt caused by Leifsonia xyli subsp. xyli. Therefore, it is important that seed cane for this variety be maintained via a clean seed program. Ho 05-961 is resistant to sugarcane borer, Diatraea saccharalis, and also the Mexican rice borer, Eoreuma loftini, based on bored internode data and yield loss data. Ho 05-961 is a variety appropriate for growing in areas where insecticides cannot be applied. The release of Ho 05-961 will help the sustainability of the Louisiana sugarcane industry and its positive traits of disease and insect resistance will help off-set other varieties currently being grown that are deficient in these traits.