Physio-agronomic performance of spring cultivars T. aestivum and T. spelta grown in organic farming system

Document Type: Research Paper

Authors

1 Department of Agrotechnology and Crop Management, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Oczapowskiego 8, 10-719 Olsztyn, Poland

2 Department of Phytopatology and Entomology, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Prawochenskiego 17, 10-719 Olsztyn, Poland.

3 Department of Plant Breeding and Seed Production, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Plac Lodzki 3, 10-724 Olsztyn, Poland

4 Department of Agrotechnology and Crop Management, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Oczapowskiego 8, 10-719 Olsztyn, Poland.

5 Department of Plant Breeding and Seed Production, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Plac Lodzki 3, 10-724 Olsztyn, Poland.

Abstract

One of the goals of organic crop production is to grow species which combine
traditional pro-healthy properties, innovative cultivation practices and harmony
with the environment. Among the ancient species the spring spelt is especially
predisposed for organic farming. In comparison with common wheat spring spelt
has a relatively short research history on physiological analysis of growth and
development. The objective of this study has been to compare the agronomic
performance and growth characteristics of spring varieties of Triticum spelta L. and
Triticum aestivum L. cultivated in the organic farming system and sown on
different dates. The basis for the research were data from field plot experiments
arranged in completely randomized blocks carried out in 2010 and 2011. The
factors were cultivars: two cultivars of T. aestivum (Trappe, Waluta) and two
cultivars of T. spelta (Roter Sommerkolben, Speltz aus Tzaribrod) and sowing
terms: optimal and postponed by two weeks. During the seasons there were
assessed: weed infestation and disease resistance, leaf chlorophyll index, biometric
measurements associated with plant morphology and yielding and nutritional value
of grains. It was stated that cultivars of T. spelta are more tolerant to unfavorable
environmental conditions than cultivars of T. aestivum, showing better adaptability
to habitat conditions, when-due to the worse weather-the uptake of nutrients from
soil can be limited, stronger competitiveness against weeds and higher tolerance to
diseases of leaves and stems. The content of chlorophyll in spelt wheat grown in organic cultivation as well as yields are very stable across years. Under
unfavourable weather conditions during the season, spelt wheat can give yields
which compare to yields of common wheat, but when in the favorable weather
conditions common wheat varieties generate yields higher by 42% (cv. Trappe) up
to 47% (cv. Waluta).




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