The Growing Point | June 2019

What response can I expect from Manipulator on my wheat?

Researchers Dr. Linda Hall of the University of Alberta, Dr. Sheri Strydhorst of Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, and Laurel Thompson of Lakeland College investigated the effects of Manipulator (a plant growth regulator by Belchim Canada) on lodging (Table 1) and yield (Table 2) for several wheat varieties. Trials were conducted at Barrhead, St. Albert, and Vermillion, Alberta, which had a rainfall of 260 mm (10.2”), 250 mm (9.8”) and 233 mm (9.2”), respectively. All sites received less than average rainfall, the long-term averages being 308 mm (12.1”), 290 mm (11.4”) and 271 mm (10.7”), respectively. Fertility yield goals were 100 bu/ac for CPS and 90 bu/ac for CWRS.

Lodging mainly occurred at Barrhead (Table 1). No lodging occurred at Vermillion and only AAC Brandon lodged at St. Albert. In general, AAC Brandon consistently had improved standability when Manipulator was applied. Stettler, CDC Plentiful, Viewfield, CDC, Landmark, AAC Wheatland and AAC Foray VB also had decreased lodging when Manipulator was applied at the Barrhead location. Although AAC Crossfield and AAC Goodwin lodged at Barrhead, it did not have improved standability with the application of Manipulator.

For yield response with Manipulator, AAC Brandon displayed significant yield increases at Barrhead (6 bu/ac) and AAC Goodwin displayed significant yield increases at Vermilion (7 bu/ac).  Most cultivars showed no significant yield increases in response to Manipulator application (Table 2). Overall, significant yield increases were much less frequent than standability.

These 2018 field research trials show that Manipulator can have significant positive effects on yield and standability of some CPS and CWRS wheat varieties. That being said, responses will vary by variety, environment and year. For that reason, it is highly recommended to conduct some on-farm trials to see if Manipulator benefits your management system.

For more information on PGR use, please click here for an informative video.

Table 1. Standability response of wheat varieties treated with the PGR Manipulator at BBCH 31-32.











Table 2. Yield response of wheat varieties treated with the PGR Manipulator at BBCH 31-32.