Submitted to: Annual Beet Sugar Development Foundation Research Report
Publication Type: Research Notes
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/30/2007
Publication Date: 6/19/2007
Citation: McGrath, J.M. 2007. Sugar beet activities of the USDA-ARS East Lansing conducted in cooperation with Saginaw Valley Bean and Beet Farm during 2006. Annual Beet Sugar Development Foundation Research Report. p. D3-D4.
Technical Abstract: An agronomic test was conducted to re-evaluate promising populations as identified in the 2005 Saginaw Valley Bean and Beet Farm agronomic trial and to examine performance of new populations derived from a number of source materials. Thirty-eight entries were tested in a completely randomized block design with four two-row plot replications 24 feet long. Seven of the top 10 entries for maximal stand on May 9, 2006 were also among the top 10 agronomic performers at harvest, and these also had higher plant densities as well as smaller and presumably sweeter beets at harvest. Two of these top 10 will be released to industry as improved germplasm in 2007. Other top 10 stand performers are part of a group of intercrosses made in 2003 between SR96, SR97, EL0204 and a few other elite East Lansing germplasm lines, and will be released to industry following another round of intercrossing. A new unit of measure, Stand Index, is proposed for measuring stand persistence. The Stand Index is simply expressed as stand at harvest divided by maximum stand. Although these fields were blocked and thinned, this value may be useful in that very high (>0.8) or very low (<0.2) values may indicate potential problems. Emergence of planted seed historically is about 60%, and the Stand Index values appear to approximate this mean as well. Stand Index seems to be inversely related to harvest spacing and average beet weight, and may be able to factor into a quality measure.