ST. LOUIS, Mo. -- New WestBred wheat varieties will offer growers an above-average combination of yield potential and protein, continuing to drive better-performing and higher-quality varieties for the U.S. wheat industry.

Both WB4401 and WB4309 are new hard red winter varieties with key disease tolerances that will provide growers more options to help improve production and enhance profitability potential. Both varieties offer improved yield potential in their regional market fits.

Adapted for the Central Plains Region, WB4401 is a medium-maturing variety that offers excellent yield potential, test weight and end-use quality. WB4401 offers a strong disease tolerance package, including intermediate leaf and stripe rust tolerance, as well as good Fusarium Head Blight (Scab) tolerance. This line also offers excellent grazing potential and very good Hessian Fly tolerance.

Shaun Ohlde grew WB4401 on his farm in Palmer, Kansas, and was pleased with its performance on dryland acreage.

"WB4401 is a new variety that looks to be rock-solid with great yield potential," said Ohlde. "It displays excellent tillering capacity for following soybeans and is an ideal maturity for our area. WB4401 provides us the complete disease package we need on our farm including fusarium head blight tolerance."

Adapted for South Dakota and the southern half of North Dakota, WB4309 is a medium to early-maturing variety with the right balance of yield, protein and standability with very good test weight and milling and baking quality. WB4309 also offers a strong disease resistance package, including good Fusarium Head Blight (Scab) resistance and very good Yellow (Stripe) Rust resistance, and is broadly adapted for the Northern region.

Jim Klebsch planted WB4309 last fall into standing wheat stubble, and although his wheat crop suffered through a hard spring freeze, this new variety handled the stress and performed well on his farm in Redfield, S.D.

"We saw really good stands and saw zero lodging with WB4309," said Klebsch. "It grew through some very tough conditions of several days in a row with temps in the 20s. Harvested in July, the yield was in the 82 to 83 bu/acre range and protein was about 13.4. So, for our environment, that is very good performance on dryland wheat. I could not find fault with this variety. It will be popular for planting for the 2021 season because it fits this region very well."

WB4401 and WB4309 are available for planting for the 2021 crop season as certified seed only (CSO) varieties. Bred from new germplasm for higher yield and protein potential with stronge disease tolerance package and pest protection, these new varieties will be available in quality-tested planting seed. Interested growers should contact their WestBred technical product manager.