A new drought tolerant lentil variety with the potential to achieve high yields in difficult climatic conditions was released by the National Seed Board of Bangladesh in the summer of 2016. The release of this variety, named Binamasur-10 is the result of a long-term collaborative research partnership between ICARDA and the Bangladesh Institute of Nuclear Agriculture. It was selected from among 150 varieties that were supplied by ICARDA as it demonstrated outstanding performances in field trials, which were held in the drought-prone zones of the Rajshahi and Chapainwabgonj districts.
ICARDA’s main objective for setting up its unique germplasm collection was to study the genetic diversity of lentils under different climatic and soil conditions. The germplasm line ILL 7656 was directly released as a variety.
Binamasur-10 grows up to a height of 39 centimeters and can develop up to 120 pods per plant. The 1000-seed weight of 24.6 grams - representing a medium seed size - is well liked by farmers. The variety has a yield potential of 2.0 tons per hectare, which is a significant increase over other locally available lentil varieties - the national average is about 1.1 tons per hectare.
Binamasur-10 is also suitable for relay cropping in areas left fallow after rice cultivation because it matures within 110 days, almost a week earlier than existing varieties. About a dozen improved varieties are grown on 85% of farming land throughout Bangladesh, bringing an additional annual income of 26.6 million $USD.
Binamasur-10, with its drought tolerant trait, is expected to be quickly adopted throughout the North-Western drought-prone districts of the country.