BARLEY growers can get updated agronomic and market information on a range of WA varieties from the Department of Agriculture and Food WA's (DAFWA) website.
More than three million tonnes of barley was delivered to CBH last season, with about 60 per cent sown to new and existing malt varieties.
The barley variety fact sheets for WA 2016 provides additional and updated information to 2016 barley variety sowing guide for WA, released in September, from 2015 harvest research results.
DAFWA development officer Georgia Trainor said the fact sheets provided an overview of new and established varieties, helping growers to make informed decisions about variety selection and crop management.
"The fact sheets provide a one-stop, quick reference guide to compare a variety's performance against others in the same grade," Ms Trainor said.
"They includes details about recent malt variety releases, such as Bass, Flinders, Granger, La Trobe and Scope CL, as well as the new feed varieties Compass, Rosalind and Spartacus CL."
Updated disease ratings are also provided for each barley variety, including a warning to southern growers about the potential for net-type net blotch (NTNB) and powdery mildew in crops this year.
"With new pathotypes of NTNB observed in the Albany and Esperance regions, growers need to be aware that Hindmarsh, La Trobe, Oxford, Scope CL and possibly Rosalind, may perform differently to their rating in the fact sheet," Ms Trainor said.
"Powdery mildew virulence has also been confirmed in the Oxford variety in the South Stirlings, so growers may need to budget for fungicide treatments this year."
The target establishment, expressed as plants per square metre, is also included for every malt, food and feed variety.
Ms Trainor said these recommendations were relevant to environments with a yield potential above 1.5 tonnes per hectare.
"The department recommends sowing 120 plants/m2 for Baudin, Commander, Granger and Scope CL, which are quite sensitive to establishment density," she said.
"Bass, Flinders, Hindmarsh and La Trobe are more flexible in their target density and can be sown at between 150-180 plants/m2, however sowing less plants may reduce profit.
"All feed barley varieties should be sown at more than 180 plants/m2."
The fact sheets also notes the frost susceptibility of the more vulnerable barley varieties.
"Growers should be aware that the National Frost Initiative, of which the department is a partner, has found that Granger, La Trobe and Oxford are more sensitive to frost than other varieties," Ms Trainor said.
Growers are encouraged to review the frost sensitivity of their chosen varieties on NVT Online's FV-Plus Frost Ranking tool.
The Barley Variety Fact Sheets for WA 2016 and the 2016 Barley Variety Sowing Guide for WA can both be found at agric.wa.gov.au by searching for 'barley variety'.