Influence of Planting Date on Winter Rye Performance in Kentucky

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Winter rye (Secale cereale L.) is a grain crop well known for its outstanding tolerance to unfavorable weather and soil conditions. Because of rye’s wide range of possible uses (e.g., cover crop, feed for livestock, bread, cookies, distilled and brewed beverages), its pro-health properties and unique flavor, interest in this crop is increasing in the United States. In 2018/2019 and 2019/2020 we tested 24 winter rye varieties that were available in the US at 3 planting dates: early, intermediate, and late. The aims of this study were to (1) identify conventional and hybrid varieties suitable for the US mid-south environment; (2) establish an optimal planting date of winter rye and (3) quantify genotype x planting date interaction. At both locations and in both growing seasons the best yielding, and most resistant to disease and lodging entries were European hybrids (KWS Serafino, KWS Daniello, KWS Bono and KWS Brasetto), and the best yielding conventional varieties were AC Hazlet and ND Dylan. There were statistically significant (p < 0.01 in 2019 and p < 0.0001 in 2020) differences in yield between planting dates both seasons. The response to planting date differed between varieties. In the 2018/2019 growing season we observed that, on average, rye performed better when planted early, but in 2019/2020, a severe May freeze caused extensive damage in early planted rye, and the best planting date was the late one. Overall, the majority of varieties analyzed individually performed the best at intermediate and late planting dates.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2887
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2022

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  • cereal rye
  • rye management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science


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