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Agronomic and Quality Attributes of Winter Durum Wheat in the Central Great Plains


This article in CS

  1. Vol. 44 No. 3, p. 878-883
    Received: June 27, 2002

    * Corresponding author(s): gmpaul@ksu.edu
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  1. V. Marque,
  2. A. K. Fritz,
  3. T. J. Martin and
  4. G. M. Paulsen *
  1. Dep. of Agronomy, Kansas State Univ., Manhattan, KS 66502


Most durum wheat (Triticum turgidum L. var. durum) in the USA is spring type grown in North Dakota, Montana, and Arizona. Winter durums are becoming available, and they are expected to have a major advantage because of their inherently higher yield potential than spring wheats. Our objectives were to evaluate adaptation of winter durum wheat to Kansas in the central Great Plains, identify agronomic traits that needed improvement, and determine the quality of the grain for pasta. Experimental lines (28) were compared with Maier, a spring durum cultivar, and Jagger, a popular hard red winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) cultivar, at three Kansas locations during the 2000–2001 growing season. Severe winter injury occurred at one location; at the other locations, yields of winter durums ranged from 2.97 to 5.25 and 0.50 to 6.24 Mg ha−1 compared with 0.65 and 5.18 Mg ha−1 for Maier and 6.35 and 6.33 Mg ha−1 for Jagger. Agronomic characteristics (plant height, lodging, biomass, and harvest index), yield components (spike density, kernels per spike, kernel weight), and quality traits (SDS sedimentation, protein concentration, hardness index) were generally favorable and indicated potential for high yields of high quality grain by the winter durums. The major deficiencies of the winter durums were inadequate winter hardiness, which ranged widely and could be remedied by breeding, and late maturity, which might be more difficult to redress because of lack of variability among the lines. We concluded that winter durum wheat is a promising crop for the central Great Plains, but some deficiencies must be corrected for it to be adapted to the region.

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