Denomination: 'Commander'
Botanical Name: Triticum turgidum subsp. durum
Applicant/Holder: Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, Swift Current Research and Development Centre
1 Airport Road
P.O. Box 1030
Swift Current, Saskatchewan
S9H 3X2
Breeder: John Clarke, Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, Swift Current, Saskatchewan
Agent in Canada: Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada
Office of Intellectual Property and Commercialization
6000 C&E Trail
Lacombe, Alberta
T4L 1W1
Tel: (403) 782-8126
Application Date: 2004-05-04
Application Number: 04-4187
Grant of Rights Date: 2006-04-07
Certificate Number: 2423
Date rights surrendered: 2016-04-07

Variety Description

Varieties used for comparison: 'AC Avonlea', 'AC Navigator' and 'Strongfield'

Summary: The plants of 'Commander' are shorter than both 'AC Avonlea' and 'Strongfield'. The spike of 'Commander' is very dense whereas it is medium in density in 'AC Avonlea' and dense in 'Strongfield'. The awns of 'Commander' are black whereas they are white in 'AC Avonlea' and 'Strongfield'. The spike of 'Commander' is longer than that of 'AC Navigator' and shorter than the spikes of both 'AC Avonlea' and 'Strongfield'. The culm of 'Commander' is straight at maturity whereas it is curved in all reference varieties.


'Commander' is a spring durum wheat that has no pubescence on the sheaths or blades of the lower leaves of the seedlings. The coleoptile has weak to medium intensity of anthocyanin colouration. It has an erect growth habit with a horizontal flag leaf attitude. The frequency of recurved/dropping flag leaves is low. The flag leaf has no pubescence on the blade or sheath, no anthocyanin colouration of the flag leaf auricles with strong to very strong glaucosity. The culm neck has strong to very strong glaucosity and is straight at maturity. The straw has no anthocyanin colouration and has a thin pith thickness in cross section.

At maturity, the very dense, white spike of 'Commander' is tapering in shape, erect in attitude (upright to 30 ) with strong glaucosity. The awns are very long, spreading and black. The shoulder of the lower glume of the spikelet is very narrow with a slightly sloping to straight shoulder. The beak of the lower glume is short and slightly curved. Internal hairs are sparse.

'Commander' has a durum kernel that is amber and medium in size. The elliptical shaped kernel has an angular to rounded cheek shape, short brush hairs, and a large oval-shaped embryo. The kernel crease is mid-wide and shallow to mid-deep. There is no or very light colouration of phenol.

Origin & Breeding History: 'Commander' was selected from the cross W9260-BK03/ 'AC Navigator'//'AC Pathfinder' made in 1996 at the Semiarid Prairie Agricultural Research Centre, Swift Current, Saskatchewan. W9260-BK03 was derived from the cross DT471/DT617. 'Commander' was derived using a modified pedigree technique. F1 plants were grown in a winter nursery near Lincoln, New Zealand, from which seed was harvested and bulked. The F2 plants were grown individually under rainfed conditions near Swift Current in 1997. Individual heads were selected and grown in F3 rows in a winter nursery in New Zealand in October 1997. The F4 was grown in a two-replicate yield trial near Swift Current and in un-replicated trials in Regina and Lethbridge in 1998, selected for agronomic performance, disease resistance and end-use quality, with five heads selected per line for sowing in individual head rows in the winter nursery in Leeston, New Zealand. Un-replicated F6 trials were grown and selected for agronomic performance, disease resistance and end-use quality in 1999. Leaf and stem rust reactions were assessed near Glenlea, Manitoba. An F4-derived F7 line designated 9667B-AA3 was advanced to the Durum B test in 2000. From 2001 to 2003, 'Commander' was assessed in the Durum Cooperative Test as DT722.

Tests & Trials: Tests and trials were conducted at the Semiarid Prairie Agricultural Research Centre, Swift Current, Saskatchewan in 2003 and 2004. Plots consisted of 4 rows, each 3 metres long with inter-row spacing of 23 cm., with 4 replications per variety arranged in randomized complete block design. 'Commander' was also tested in the Durum Cooperative Test from 2001 to 2003.

Comparison tables for 'Commander' with reference varieties 'AC Avonlea', 'AC Navigator' and 'Strongfield'

Plant height (cm)

  'Commander' 'AC Avonlea' 'AC Navigator' 'Strongfield'
mean (LSD (0.05) = 5.0) 82.5 93.5 80.5 93.0

Flag leaf length (cm)

  'Commander' 'AC Avonlea' 'AC Navigator' 'Strongfield'
mean (LSD (0.05) = 2.3) 18.6 18.7 15.4 19.8

Flag leaf width (mm)

  'Commander' 'AC Avonlea' 'AC Navigator' 'Strongfield'
mean (LSD (0.05) = 1.0) 15.4 14.2 13.9 14.5

Spike length (cm)

  'Commander' 'AC Avonlea' 'AC Navigator' 'Strongfield'
mean (LSD (0.05) = 0.8) 6.2 7.4 5.6 7.2
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