Pulse Industry

Project Abstract: Evaluating Field Pea and Faba Bean Germplasm for Alberta Growers

In Alberta, acreage of pulses has increased from 1.2 million acres in 2013 to 2.4 million acres in 2016. That is a doubling of acres in only 3 years which is quite substantial and indicates the increased interest in the value of pulse crops as a highly profitable cash crop for Alberta rotations. Field pea contributes the majority of acres to these totals accounting for 1 million acres in 2013 and 1.8 million acres in 2016. Faba bean is the other major crop contributing to these totals increasing from 20,000 acres to 100,000 between 2013 and 2015.

The objectives of this project include: 1. Screening of new pulse genetics; 2. Western Canadian field pea and faba bean co-op testing; and 3. Regional Variety trials. The goal is to identify superior pulse varieties suitable for Alberta and determine suitability in Alberta regions. This involves screening genetic material of field pea and faba bean from around the world for registration and testing registered varieties under Alberta climatic conditions. The plots are established across the province from Fort Vermillion in the north to Oyen in the south. The number of plots varies each year depending on the number of entries in each test.

Field trials are arranged in a randomized complete block (RCBD) or lattice design, depending on location, and replicates varied from two to four replications depending on seed availability. Field trials are organized into the following experiments: Field Pea Co-op A, B and C; Limagrain Field Pea Screening; Field Pea Networks; Field Pea Advanced Yield; Field Pea Elite Yield; Pea Yield; Faba Bean Advanced Yield; Faba Bean Elite Yield; Faba Bean A and B Co-ops; Yellow Pea regional variety trials; Green Pea regional variety trials; and Faba bean regional variety trials.

Trials are grown according to standard agronomic practices and the following data is collected: % emergence, days to flower, plant height, lodging, maturity, 1000 seed weight and seed yield. An ANOVA is performed and generally, due to significant interactions, locations are analyzed separately with the MIXED procedure of SAS. A significance level of P≤ 0.05 is used for all statistical tests.

Recommendation for registration of breeding material is based on a line being equal to or better than the check variety in at least one attribute (yield, maturity, seed roundness, bleaching resistance or chemical composition). The best field pea and faba bean lines are recommended for registration each year at the Prairie Grain Development Committee (PGDC), Pulse and Special Crops Recommending Sub Committee (PSCRSC) meetings.


For more information, contact Robyne Bowness-Davidson (403) 782-8023 robyne.bowness@gov.ab.ca

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