Carrington Research Extension Center


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Winter Rye Variety Yield Results


Winter rye planting season is near, along with choosing a variety and securing seed to plant. Variety choice is somewhat limited with winter rye although more varieties are becoming available as the acreage has been increasing with this crop over the past few growing seasons. Planting date recommendations for winter rye are not well defined for North Dakota although the planting window is quite wide and it can be planted from early August to November with success. The optimum time recommended for planting is September 10-30. Seeding rates for winter rye are also not well defined for North Dakota. Because of the competitive nature, early season growth characteristics and ability to tiller abundantly seeding rates are also quite variable. Recommended seeding rates are 900,000 to 1,200,000 PLS per acre. It is best to determine seed size or seed per pound for planting rates as the seed size can vary quite extensively with winter rye. An example of this is best illustrated from the nine commercial seed lots used to plant the 2017 state tests that varied from 12,800 to 22,100 seeds per pound.

Trials were planted in the fall of 2016 by NDSU staff to evaluate varieties for grain production at a number of locations across the state. The CREC coordinates the state variety testing program and sent the varieties to Research Centers at Minot, Hettinger, Langdon, and Williston.

Preliminary data has been completed from three sites and is summarized in a table below. Data is averaged from Research Extension Centers at Minot, Langdon and Carrington. New to the trials this year is a hybrid rye named Brasetto from KWS in Germany. This hybrid is extremely high yielding and is being marketed as a high quality winter rye for milling, distilling or malting. Brasetto is shorter with excellent lodging and disease resistance. Seed cannot be saved and a license agreement must be signed. Aroostok and Wheeler are low yielding varieties and are commonly used for cover crop (Aroostok) and forage (Wheeler) applications. The most common varieties available for 2017 fall planting are Hazlet, ND Dylan and Rymin.

Variety trial data is available from individual Research Extension Center Annual reports, Extension Bulletin A1049-16 or the NDSU variety trial website:

Brasetto hybrid winter rye on June 1 at the CREC.

NDSU releases ND Dylan (2016) and Dacold (1989) on June 1 at the CREC.


Steve Zwinger

Agronomy Research Specialist

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