New Variety of Hard Red Winter Wheat Offers Excellent Straw Strength and Pest and Disease Resistance

September 19, 2018

WestBred® wheat brings forth variety to help growers combat Wheat Streak Mosaic Virus and Wheat Stem Sawfly

ST. LOUIS, 9/21/2018 – Colorado wheat growers have unique challenges to contend with, but perhaps none is more of a “pest” than Wheat Stem Sawfly. These harmful insects burrow into the wheat stem, compromising straw strength and often resulting in costly crop damage. While it’s historically been a challenge to northern wheat growers, it has moved south in to Colorado and has increased in severity. Fortunately, WB4418, a new Hard Red Winter Wheat variety from WestBred® wheat, offers excellent straw strength, coupled with very good tolerance to pests like Sawfly.

“WestBred wheat’s WB4418 shows better tolerance to light-to-moderate infestations of Sawfly, due in part to its excellent straw strength,” says Mark Lubbers, WestBred Technical Product Manager for the Central Region. “It has good tolerance to Wheat Streak Mosaic Virus, which can have devastating effects on wheat crops in this area.”

In addition to pest resistance, early adopters who plant WB4418 this season can also expect:

  • Good test weight
  • Excellent emergence
  • Excellent straw strength
  • Very good Wheat Streak Mosaic Virus resistance

“Colorado growers looking for high-management wheat characteristics will want to take a look at WB4418,” says Lubbers. “It was the top-performing Hard Red Winter Wheat variety in Colorado State wheat trials conducted last year in Burlington — so it’s not surprising that growers are finding it to be a high-yielding, agronomically sound variety, especially on irrigated acres. It’s a new option that’s already getting lots of traction.”

For more information on WB4418 and other WestBred varieties, visit or contact your Regional Commercial Manager, Andrew Blubaugh, at 620-960-9957 or

About WestBred

WestBred wheat provides seed suppliers and their growers access to the highest yield potential wheat seed, as well as testing, education, resources and experienced representatives to help maximize their yield potential.