Extension/Research Information

2003 Ohio Wheat Performance Test

Ohio State University Extension
Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center
The Ohio State University

Horticulture and Crop Science Series 228
August 2003

James Beuerlein, Professor, Dept. Horticulture & Crop Science
Pat Lipps, Professor, Dept. Plant Pathology
Rich Minyo, Jr., Research Associate, Dept. Horticulture & Crop Science

The purpose of the Ohio Wheat Performance Trial is to evaluate wheat varieties, blends, brands, and breeding lines for yield, grain quality and other important performance characteristics. This information gives wheat producers comparative information for selecting the varieties best suited for their production system and market. Varieties differ in yield potential, winter hardiness, maturity, standability, disease and insect resistance, and other agronomic characteristics. Selection should be based on performance from multiple test sites and years.


Each entry was evaluated at five test sites (see front cover) using four replications per site in a randomized complete block design. Plots consisted of 7 rows, 7.5 inches apart and 35 feet long. Participating companies selected the seeding rate for each of their varieties. Tests were planted within ten days after the fly-safe date with approximately 30 pounds of nitrogen applied at planting followed by the addition of about 70-100 pounds in early spring. Herbicides were applied as needed for weed control. The following data were collected:

Yield Plots were harvested with a self propelled plot harvester with yield being reported in bushels per acre at 13.5 percent moisture.

Test Weight Test weights were measured in lb/bu at all locations using harvest grain moisture.

Seed Size Thousands of harvested seeds per pound. (Example: 15.5 = 15,500 seeds / per pound.)

Percent Lodging Lodging was a visual estimate of the percent of plants that lean more than 45 degrees from vertical.

Plant Height Plant height was the distance from the soil surface to the top of the heads.

Heading Date The heading date was the average calendar day of the year on which 50 percent of the heads were completely emerged. (Example: Day 136 = May 16.)

Powdery Mildew (PM) Powdery mildew (caused by Erysiphe graminis) was evaluated at Wooster on May 27 when plants were in Feekes growth stages 10.1 to 10.5.1. Each plot was rated based on a 0 to 10 scale where: 0 = 0 to trace % leaf area covered; 1 = leaf 4 with trace - 50%; 2 = leaf 3 with 1-5%; 3 = leaf 3 with 5-15%; 4 = leaf 3 with > 15%; 5 = leaf 2 with 1-5%; 6 = leaf 2 with 5-15%; 7 = leaf 2 with >15%; 8 = leaf 1 with 1-5%; 9 = leaf 1 with 5-15%; and 10 = leaf 1 with >15% leaf area covered (leaf 1 = flag leaf). This scale takes into account the percentage leaf area affected and the progress of the disease upward on the plants.

Head Scab Fusarium head scab was assessed at the Pickaway County plots on June 11 which was 18 to 21 days after flowering and the appropriate time to assess for scab severity. The plants were in the watery ripe stage of development (Feekes GS 10.5.4 to 11.1). The disease level was uniform across the field and known susceptible lines (Patterson, Sission) had the higher levels of disease than the more resistant variety (Freedom). However, disease severity was related to heading date since the earlier varieties generally had more disease than varieties that flowered later. Therefore the data is confounded by heading date and may not represent the true reaction to scab. For example a susceptible later maturing variety may have had low scab levels because it escaped some infection because its flowering missed a rain event. The data represent the percent of spikelets per head with symptoms.

Flour Yield Flour Yield is the percent flour yield from milled whole grain.

Flour Softness Flour softness is the percent of fine-granular milled flour. Values higher than approximately 50 indicate kernel textures that are appropriate for soft wheat. Generally, high values are more desirable for milling and baking.


PREVIOUS CROP Soybeans Soybeans Soybeans Soybeans Soybeans
SOIL TYPE Hoytville Blount Canfield Kokomo Ockley
TILLAGE No-till Disk Conventional No-till No-till
PLANT DATE Oct. 2 Oct. 3 Oct. 1 Oct. 8 Oct. 15
SOIL pH 6.3 6.6 6.3 5.8 5.9
Soil Test P (ppm) 28 55 50 31 12
Soil Test K (ppm) 147 254 177 202 79
FERTILIZER (N,P,K) 112-46-76 127-69-60 120-60-60 117-94-60 117-69-90
HERBICIDES APPLIED Stinger 2,4-D Harmony Extra HyDep Harmony Extra
HARVEST DATE July 17 July 16 July 18 July 19 July 15


Field and weather conditions were favorable for timely planting in October, 2002. Fall growth was marginally adequate throughout most of the state and all test sites experienced some tillering before the onset of winter dormancy. Winter survival was good with very little winterkill. The weather from March through June was cooler and wetter than normal with less sunlight than normal in May and June. The crop headed at the same time as in 2002 and then had a relatively long grain fill period in June. The cool cloudy weather of June slowed grain fill in many areas resulting in lower than expected yields especially in southern Ohio which experienced more cloud cover than northern Ohio. Rainfall was quite variable throughout the state all spring and caused flooding in some areas. All test sites received rain between physiological maturity and harvest which lowered test weights and reduced grain quality, especially in southern Ohio. The number 2 test site also received hale during this period. The amount of yield and quality loss was a function of the variety maturity date and weather at the test location. The generally low level of disease in Northern Ohio allowed for higher yields than in southern Ohio.

Wheat Test Locator Map



Results of the 2003 performance evaluation of soft red winter wheat varieties can be found in Table 1. Tables 2 and 3 contain multi-year performance data.

Eight soft white wheat varieties were evaluated along with the soft red varieties at sites 1, 2 and 3. Performance for the soft white varieties is presented in Table 4 with two-year data in table 5.

Ten varieties at sites 2 and 5 were also tested in 15 inches wide rows in addition to the more normal 7.5 inch row spacing. Variety performance in the two row spacings is presented in Table 6. Reduced plant height and tillering prevented the wider row spacings from producing yields comparable to those for 7.5 inch rows.

Table 7 contains the brand name and seed source of each variety tested in 2003.

Entries in the data tables are arranged in order of increasing heading date averaged for several locations. A least significant difference (LSD) is reported for yield and other characteristics. Yields and characteristics of two varieties are significantly different 70 percent of the time if their yields or characteristics differ by more than the LSD value reported. Flour and softness ratings were performed by USDA-ARS soft wheat quality laboratory, at OARDC in Wooster, OH, Charles Gaines, director.

Any column of data can be sorted by clicking at the top of the column. Inclusion of varieties in the Ohio Wheat Performance Trial does not constitute an endorsement of a particular entry by The Ohio State University, Ohio Agriculture Research and Development Center, or Ohio State University Extension.

Go to Ohio Crop Performance

All educational programs conducted by Ohio State University Extension are available to clientele on a nondiscriminatory basis without regard to race, color, creed, religion, sexual orientation, national origin, gender, age, disability or Vietnam-era veteran status.

Keith L. Smith, Associate Vice President for Ag. Adm. and Director, OSU Extension.

TDD No. 800-589-8292 (Ohio only) or 614-292-1868

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