2008 NSA Funded Research
The National Sunflower Association selected and funded the following research projects for the 2008 year. Funding was also in part possible due to the North Dakota Oilseeds Council, South Dakota Oilseeds Council, Colorado Sunflower Administrative Committee, Kansas Sunflower Commission and the North Dakota State Board of Agricultural Research and Education.
2008 NSA-Funded Research Projects
Sunflower rust: race identification, hybrid resistance evaluation and search for new sources of resistance

Investigator: Tom Gulya, USDA ARS

Description: Collect and identify rust races across the entire major U.S. sunflower production area during a three year period. Second, to evaluate commercial hybrids for resistance to the predominant rust races and to publish this information. If, during the course of this project, we identify new races able to overcome all existing rust resistance genes, another objective will be added: to identify resistance to any new race(s) and assist in transferring that resistance into agronomically acceptable lines for release.

Funded Amount: $10,820​​​​​​​
Fungicidal Rust Control in Texas High Plains Sunflower

Investigators: Roxanne Bowling and Calvin Trostle, Texas A & M

Description: Test timing and rate of tebuconazole (Folicur) and pyrachlostrobin (Headline) for rust control in sunflower. Compile data that will assist in gaining a Section 18(c) EPA label applications from Texas Dept of Ag. Prepare farmer education materials for optimum sunflower rust management in the Southern High Plains.

Funded Amount: $3,600
Evaluation of fungicide efficacy and development of a timing strategy for control of sunflower rust

Investigator: Sam Markell, NDSU

Description: The objective of this research is to evaluate fungicides the QoI fungicides; Headline and Quadris, the triazole fungicides; Tilt, Proline, Prosaro (Folicur + Proline), and three timings of Folicur, in three locations (Minot, Carrington, and Langdon, ND) under high sunflower rust disease pressure. High disease pressure will be facilitated by inoculation rust urediniospores, and irrigation to promote disease development.

Funded Amount: $20,000
Evaluation of sunflower for resistance to seed insect pests in the northern plains

Investigators: Larry Charlet, USDA ARS, and Kathy Grady of SDSU

Description: Evaluate selected hybrids, accessions, interspecific crosses, and lines in screening nurseries for resistance to the banded sunflower moth in North Dakota and red sunflower seed weevil in North and South Dakota.

Funded Amount: $8,500
Screening sunflower for reaction to sunflower midge infestation

Investigators: Larry Charlet USDA and Janet Knodel NDSU

Description: To evaluate and score commercial sunflower hybrids for their midge reaction

Funded Amount: $5,321
Effects of Planting Date and Plant Populations on Dectes Populations and Management in NE Colorado

Investigator: Assefa Gebre-Amlak, CSU

  1. Identify planting dates that encounter low levels of long-horned beetle larval infestations.
  2. Determine planting populations that have less susceptibility to infestations.
Funded Amount: $5,929
Development of Resistance to Stem and Seed Insect Pests of Sunflower in the Central Plains

Investigator: Larry Charlet, USDA ARS

Description: Evaluate selected crosses, accessions, and interspecific crosses in screening nurseries for resistance to the sunflower stem weevil, sunflower longhorned beetle, and sunflower moth in Kansas.

Funded Amount: $55,000
Determination of the Biology, Impact, Economic Threshold, and Pest Management Strategies for the Sunflower Seed Maggot, Neotephritis finalis in the Northern Plains

Investigator: Janet Knodel, NDSU

Description: Determine the life history of the seed maggot, how each generation damages the sunflower head, and the impact of this pest on cultivated sunflower throughout the northern region. Through a series of field studies, determine the potential of different management strategies including planting date, plant resistance, and chemical control. Will include studies to develop sampling methodologies and establish economic thresholds.

Funded Amount: $28,000
Mitigation of yield losses to Dectes texanus in rain fed sunflowers

Investigator: JP Michaud, KSU

Description: Evaluate two stay-green hybrids for their potential to mitigate losses to D. texanus (Dectes) in rain fed oilseed sunflower. Quantify the degree to which the 'stay green' trait will retard the desiccation of sunflower stalks and delay the onset of girdling by D. texanus larvae, and other stalk insects, in comparison with a conventional NuSun hybrid. Determine the median stalk moisture level that triggers the girdling behavior of D. texanus larvae. Plot post-maturity changes in stalk breakage forces in two stay-green hybrids versus a conventional NuSun hybrid and correlate these with moisture content and larval girdling.

Funded Amount: $11,005
Sunflower Response to KIH-485

Investigators: R. Zollinger and Brain Jenks NDSU, Curt Thompson, Phil Stahlman, and Mike Moechnig SDSU

Description: Determine weed control and sunflower response from tank-mix combinations of KIH-485 plus Spartan applied at different rates and in 8 different geographic locations. Determine weed efficacy in conventional and no-till systems. This data will be used to support IR-4 registration of KIH-485 in sunflower.

Funded Amount: $12,000
Nitrogen Management for Irrigated Sunflowers

Investigator: Joel Schneekloth USDA-ARS Akron, CO

  1. 1) Develop a nitrogen uptake relationship for irrigated sunflowers. Understand when and how much N the plant utilizes at major growing points.
  2. N management recommendations for fully irrigated and limited irrigation sunflower. Better understanding of soil N utilization by irrigated sunflowers and the need for additional N when following irrigated corn.
  3. Develop potential fertigation recommendations for fully irrigated and limited irrigation sunflowers.
Funded Amount: $6,000
Sunflower Production in Skip Row Configurations for the Semi-Arid Central Plains

Investigator: Francisco Calderon USDA-ARS Akron, CO

  1. Determine the optimum sunflower yields for different planting geometries and N fertilizer combinations.
  2. Determine the water usage for the different geometry x fertilizer combinations.
  3. Validate crop models such as the OILCROP-SUN for simulating and predicting sunflower performance and yields in the central great plains under different planting configurations.
  4. Test the hypothesis that under high N, the sunflower will, deplete moisture during rapid vegetative growth, but leaving little moisture for oil production
Funded Amount:  $5,000
Evaluate planter meter and seed tube systems for seed spacing

Investigator: John Smith, U of NE

Description: Ealuate confection seed spacing performance for newly released planter meter or seed tube options for the Deere MaxEmerge vacuum and finger pickup series planters that manufacturers have developed in response to concerns raised in the 2007 project. 2. Evaluate the CaseIH 1200 series, the Deere MaxEmerge vacuum series, and the Deere finger pickup series planter meters for seed spacing performance with oil-type sunflower seed using the University of Nebraska electronic planter test stand.

Funded Amount: $5,600
On-Farm Sunflower Planting Date Study

Investigator: Kathleen Grady, SDSU

Description: Determine if the profit potential from oilseed sunflower planted later than the current USDA/RMA final planting dates in South Dakota differs from that of sunflower planted on or near the USDA/RMA final planting date.

Funded Amount: $13,416
Use of an Experimental Compound to Replace Paraquat as a Harvest Aid in Sunflower

Investigators: Kirk Howatt and Brian Jenks NDSU, Phil Stahlman KSU and Mike Moechnig SDSU

  1. Identify the range of achene moisture at desiccant application that allows for early harvest without causing less yield of seed or oil than non-desiccated sunflower
  2. Determine if sunflower response to the experimental compound is consistent across hybrids in ND, SD, KS environments
Funded Amount: $26,275
Skip-Row Sunflower for Drought Avoidance in Dryland Cropping Systems

Investigator: Thandiwe Nleya SDSU

Description: Determine the impact of planting arrangement (skip one/plant one row, skip two/plant two rows, and conventional planting in 20-inch rows) and plant population on performance of sunflower in a semi-arid environment in western SD 2. Assess how the skip-row technology would affect weed pressure and weed management

Funded Amount: $3,305
Water Use Efficiency & Irrigation Timing for Southern High Plains Sunflower (TX & NM)

Investigator: Calvin Trostle, Texas A & M

Description: Implement a scaled irrigation regime for sunflower at 5 levels of water application (including dryland as level "0") and seasonal irrigation targets of 4", 8", 12" & 16" for determination of water use curves to provide data for developing irrigation scheduling criteria. Examine two additional irrigation timings whereby a higher proportion of the 8" water level will be applied either earlier in the vegetative stages or later in the reproductive stages. Conduct farmer education programs for optimum sunflower irrigation in the Southern High Plains.

Funded Amount: $8,000
Confection Sunflower Production in the Big Horn Basin of Wyoming

Investigator: Randall Violett

  1. Determine if sunflower production is a viable crop rotation for producers in the Big Horn Basin of Wyoming.
  2. Determine the best rotation with sunflowers in the Big Horn Basin.
  3. Be able to make production (Seeding rates, Fertilizer rates, Weed control and Irrigation practices) recommendations to producers of this area.
Funded Amount: $2,200
2008 Crop Survey

Investigator: Duane Berglund

Description: Conduct Annual survey of the sunflower crop to determine production issues that may need research/education attention

Funded Amount: $8,500
Production Practices for Late-Planted Sunflower in Eastern Kansas

Investigator: James H. Long, Jr., KSU

  1. Determine optimum plant populations not only for yield but also for reducing plant dry down time in the late fall.
  2. Determine if the use of drying agents to hasten plant dry down are viable in the late-planted production system.
Funded Amount: $4,500
Determination of Physiological Maturity in sunflower

Investigator: Burton Johnson, NDSU

Description: Determine when physiological maturity occurs in sunflower.

Funded Amount: $10,000
Supplemental funding for USDA ARS geneticist position

Staff Name: Brent Hulke

Description: Provide adequate funding to allow sunflower unit to replace vacant geneticist position

Funded Amount: $50,000
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