RE: Difference between Forage Oats and the Coker 227
OAT FORAGE YIELDS AT OVERTON FOR 1996-97 AND TWO-YEAR MEANS
Steve Ward, Jim Crowder, and L. R. Nelson
Background. Oats are an important winter forage crop in south central Texas. Oats can produce high yields of good quality forage. Oats are susceptible to winterkill and only the most winterhardy varieties should be planted in northeast Texas. There are significant differences between varieties for winterhardiness and forage distribution during a growing season. Some varieties produce much of their forage yield in the fall, while others produce a more balanced yield throughout the growing season.
Research Findings. An oat forage variety experiment is conducted annually at Overton. Many available commercial and experimental oat varieties were evaluated during the past 2 years. Fertilizer application rates and dates for 1996-97 are noted in Table 1. All tests were planted into a prepared seedbed. Planting dates were early September normally, however, in 1996 the planting date was 9 September. Seeding rate was 110 lbs/ac and plot size was 4 x 12 ft. Seed was drilled into the seedbed approximately 1 inch deep. Entire plots were harvested on five dates with a Hege plot harvester at a cutting height of 2 inches. There were 4 replications. Oat forage was approximately 10 inches tall during the first harvest on 6 December. The commercial varieties demonstrating best seedling vigor and rapid fall growth were Buckshot HG, Coker 227, and Chapman. The experimentals TX92M1596, TX90D2457, and TX92M1048 also produced high forage yields. The second harvest date was 2 February, indicating little forage production in January. Higher yields were produced by Buckshot HG and Dallas. The third harvest was on 20 March with best forage yields produced by Coker 227, Coker 719 and 833. There were several experimentals which produced similar yields. The fourth harvest was 9 April, however, there were little differences between entries for this harvest date. The last harvest was on 6 May. The best yielding varieties were Dallas, TAMO 397, Nora, and the two Coker lines. Several experimentals also produced high late season forage yields. The highest total season yield was produced by experimentals TX92M1596, TX90D2457 and TX92M1048 and the highest yielding varieties were Buckshot HG, Dallas, Coker 227, Coker 719, and Nora. Differences in forage yields of less than the LSD (note under each column) may be due to experimental error and should not be considered significant. A two-year mean is presented for those varieties tested over this period. There were large differences between varieties. The highest yielding entry was Dallas followed by Buckshot HG, 833, and Ozark. Differences in yield between varieties are often a result of their winterhardiness, however, we have not had any winterkill on oats over the past two years.
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