Varietal performance of wheat varieties against rusts and its adoption in Nepal
A total of 41 bread wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) varieties have been released so far in Nepal since 1960. Farmers have been gradually adopting newly released varieties due to disease and lodging resistance, better yield performance and good taste. In Nepal, wheat area coverage, production and productivity have been increased by almost seven, sixteen and two folds, respectively in the last 56 years. Performance of varieties varies from one region to another. Yellow rust is the major problems in hills while leaf rust is the primary issue on the plains. Stem rust is sporadic in localized areas of Nepal. Wheat research program in Nepal has released 9 wheat varieties resistant to Ug99 namely Vijaya, Tilottama, Banganga, Gaura, Dhaulagiri, Danphe, Sworgadwari, Munal and Chyakhura. Vijay, Tilottama and Banganga are also resistant to leaf rust while, Dhaulagiri, Danphe, Sworgadwari, Munal and Chyakhura are resistant to yellow rust. Since the release of Vijay, the first Ug99 resistant variety in Nepal during 2010, source seed production of rust resistant varieties has been increasing significantly each year with present coverage under these varieties being around 40%. WK 1204 has been occupied 35% area in hills of Nepal. Seed production and distribution of such high yielding disease resistant varieties through public-private partnership is leading to quality seed supply for varietal diversity and better food security in the country.