Seed World

The 20 Most Innovative Plant Varieties of 2020: 6-10

At European Seed, we wanted to shine some light on all these new plant varieties and give you a taste of the innovations that are out there. But of course, we can’t show all 3,500 new varieties of 2020 here, so we asked the national seed associations in Europe, and many other peers in the European seed sector to send us their lists of which varieties in their eyes were the most innovative of last year.

Please note: Plant varieties appear in alphabetical order


AS170 — Corn

‘AS 170’ is a special leafy type of corn silage hybrid, where one parental line carries the natural mutant dominant Leafy 1 gene, which leads to an increase in the total leaf number, particularly the number of leaves above the ear. In addition, the plants have lower ear attachment height and greater green biomass yield potential. All this results in a shorter vegetative period and a longer grain filling period compared to the normal analogues and more sugar content in green biomass. In general, these types of hybrids are having about 40% greater leaf area than normal type of hybrids. AS170 Silaz is bred primarily for silage purpose, has a decreased lignin content in its stalk and the kernels are large with a higher portion of soft endosperm and smaller particles of starch than in normal grain hybrids. The hybrid was co-developed with Glenn Seed Company.


Cayman — Potato

The name of potato variety ‘Cayman’ refers to a “strong car”, and strong is exactly what this variety is. It combines a strong resistance package with a good drought and heat tolerance, so it can be grown everywhere and even can be used for organic production. Besides a good yield and a high dry matter content, the variety also comes with an excellent Late blight resistance, both in foliage and in the tubers. It has a very fast emergence and strong, well covering foliage, and growers can produce two or even three crops a year. The variety has a high adaptation, including a very good performance in the tropics. It is suitable for boiling, baking, home fries, crisps and, organic. A truly robust variety.


DKC4943 — Corn
Bayer Crop Science

The maize hybrid ‘DKC4943’ was created in 2010 by Bayer’s Hungarian breeder, Péter Könczöl, PhD. This hybrid exemplifies the benefit of global collaboration in plant breeding associated with cutting-edge technologies and fast recycling of elite germplasm. Made from the cross between a French and a North American early-season corn line, it combines favourable traits from both regions: yield potential and consistency across various levels of production, wide adaptation, drought tolerance, excellent dry down, lodging tolerance, and year-to-year stability. Sold in 10 European countries, it has become a leading product on its maturity segment and is now sown on more than 10% of the maize surface, it has been leading in the Hungarian market for the last four years. It was elected three times ’Corn of the Year’ in Central Europe, confirming its high and reliable performance across environments and farmers preferred selection.


ES Alicia — Rapeseed

‘ES Alicia’ is the earliest rapeseed variety on the market. It has the particularity of flowering about 10 days before all other varieties. And the innovative concept is that this variety is mixed in the same bag with another variety: ‘ES Capello’ in a ready to use mixture of up to 93% ‘ES Capello’ and 7% ‘ES Alicia’. This concept is called Capello Protect and is an alternative solution for controlling insect pests such as pollen beetles, which consume the flower buds of rapeseed and cause significant yield losses. These insects will be attracted to the flowers of ES Alicia and therefore will much less attack the main variety ‘ES Capello’, so ‘ES Alicia’ plays the role of a natural trap. This biological control makes it possible to avoid the need for an insecticide treatment and therefore to protect the user (farmer) and auxiliary insects (bees, other pollinators, etc.).


Fabian — Ryegrass

The variety ‘Fabian’ is one of the company’s advanced turf tetraploid perennial ryegrass varieties, so-called 4turf®. This 4turf represents a giant step in turf breeding with significant improved tolerance for diseases and drought stress. The variety has a turf quality and a high density that is challenging some of the best turf diploid perennial ryegrasses. In addition, it has both a better adaptability and stress tolerance than turf diploid perennial ryegrasses. In sport mixtures the variety is a crucial component, to cope with diseases and drought. Drought tolerance is an important factor in sport field management and having drought tolerant turf allows professional turf managers to limit pitch irrigation, which is a key point in reducing the risks of disease attacks and the best way to reduce annual bluegrass.

Read about innovative varieties 11-15 here

Read about innovative varieties 16-20 here

Did you miss the first 5?
Read about Innovative Varieties 1 – 5 here