The University of Minnesota has released a new hard red spring wheat variety called MN-Washburn. It features improved straw strength and overall disease resistance. In particular, it contains the bdv2 gene for resistance to Barley Yellow Dwarf Virus.
“In state trials MN-Washburn stood out due to its consistent yield, superior straw strength and overall disease resistance,” said Jim Anderson, University of Minnesota wheat breeder, Department of Agronomy and Plant Genetics. “While lower in protein than other recent UMN releases, MN-Washburn still provides excellent milling and baking quality.”
The new release is named after the Washburn A flour mill (built in 1874 and then rebuilt in 1880 after a fire). The Washburn A mill was once the largest flour mill in the world and at its peak milled approximately two million pounds of flour a day. The Washburn A flour mill, along with others in the area, helped earn Minneapolis the nickname of "The Mill City."
MN-Washburn joins several other recent University of Minnesota spring wheat varieties; Lang-MN (2017), Shelly (2016), Bolles (2015), Linkert (2013), and Rollag (2011). These varieties offer growers a good combination of strong characteristics and perform well across the upper Midwest. More detailed performance data and comparisons of previously released varieties can be found on the Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station website at www.maes.umn.edu. Prior to being formally named, MN-Washburn was tested as MN10201-4-A.
MN-Washburn seed will be distributed through Minnesota Crop Improvement Association (MCIA) members for planting in spring 2020.