Corne van der Westhuizen, Agronomist, North West, Pannar Seed
Contact details: 082 570 8240
The Pannar sunflower stable indisputably offers the best genetic potential and technology on the market. It tops the ARC trials year after year, with six out of the top 10 hybrids in the 2019/2020 season. These hybrids offer excellent yield potential at all yield levels as well as superior oil content. With exceptional stability under varying conditions, these hybrids are widely adapted. The package includes options for earlier planting and earlier flowering dates to help manage the risk of Sclerotinia infection. Technology options include conventional and Pannar® brand sunflower hybrids with the Clearfield® Plus trait, as well as a hybrid high in oleic acid.
This is a new conventional addition to the Pannar stable. PAN 7170 is agronomically similar to PAN 7100 but is slightly quicker flowering. Both hybrids are slightly quicker than PAN 7080, which means that the hybrids complement each other in a package and thus help to better manage the risk of possible Sclerotinia infection. Although PAN 7170 flowers slightly earlier, its grain filling period is slightly longer than that of PAN 7100, which is beneficial for PAN 7170's yield potential and oil content. When planting must take place later in the season, PAN 7170 is a very good choice. PAN 7170 has better Alternaria tolerance than the other two conventional hybrids.
PAN 7180CLP is the Clearfield® Plus conversion of the well-known PAN 7080 and has the same base genetics. The Pannar® brand sunflower hybrids with the Clearfield® Plus trait offer the benefit of an alternative weed control and crop rotation strategy. Euro-Lightning® Plus herbicide provides effective post-emergence control of a broad spectrum of grass and broadleaf weeds. However, keep in mind that Pannar® brand sunflowers with the Clearfield® Plus trait are only registered for use with Euro-Lightning® Plus herbicide (L10316).
Last season's trial results show that PAN 7180CLP achieved the same yield performance as PAN 7080 but offers some agronomic improvements in terms of Alternaria and even Sclerotinia tolerance. Significantly fewer Sclerotinia problems were experienced on the parental lines. PAN 7180CLP replaces PAN 7156CLP. PAN 7180CLP complements the Clearfield® Plus hybrid package very well with its good yield potential and agronomic properties. Together with PAN 7102CLP and PAN 7160CLP, the three hybrids form a well-rounded package that can help to better manage the risk of Sclerotinia infection. In the Clearfield Plus package, PAN 7102CLP flowers first over a short period (10 days), PAN 7160CLP flowers second, but flowers over a much longer period (up to 18-21 days) and PAN 7180CLP flowers last, providing optimal Sclerotinia management. The number of days to physiological maturity follows the same sequence as set out above for the flowering dates. This means that the hybrids' harvest window is spread over a slightly longer period. Sunflower sometimes has a way of staying wet and then drying down completely within a day or two to below 8%, which in turn makes combining very difficult as excess plant material accumulates on the combine’s header causing grinding and impeding the flow of material into the combine.
When planting a package of the three hybrids, the harvesting process is significantly simplified as the sunflowers dry off over a longer period.
When is the best stage to harvest?
Sunflowers are physiologically mature when the back of the head turns from green to yellow and the circumferential bracts begin to brown and become brittle. The crop can be harvested when the back of the heads is still slightly moist. Losses during the harvesting process are thereby significantly reduced. The harvesting process can start when the moisture content of the seed is 12.5%. However, keep in mind that sunflower seeds that need to be stored must have a moisture content of less than 10%, otherwise fungi can build up within 48 hours after being dumped in a heap. There is also a risk that the seed may spontaneously combust at higher moisture percentages. Optimal moisture content for storage is 9.5% if the seed must be stored in a silo for months. It must also be continuously aerated or moved from silo to silo to prevent the build-up of fungi.
As a multi-crop specialist, Pannar offers a complete range of cultivars composed of different growth classes and traits to meet almost all planting date and production area combinations. Coupled with our expertise in local conditions, exceptional agronomic support and development programmes, we provide excellent advice to farmers, based on their unique needs to optimise production.
Sunflower hybrid recommendations for the different production regions:
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