While it’s not the first thing you think of when thinking of South Carolina agriculture, a good many acres in the state are devoted to oat production. Chris Ray, Assistant Director of Clemson University Extension and his team released a new variety for planting this fall:
“We have a new variety, called Graham. It’s named after Dr. Joyce Graham who is a long standing plant breeder at Clemson University who worked with small grains. He retired a few years ago."
Ray explains that this new variety is being marketed as higher yielding grain variety:
“Oats are typically sold as either grain types or forage type, this is more of a grain type oat. It’s an extremely high yielder. In many places it yields 130-140 bushels per acre, where you would see ten years ago about 100 bushels. So you get 40-50% yield increase.”
The Graham variety has also tested well throughout the southeast, according to Ray:
“It’s a very broadly adapted oat, meaning that it does well in a lot of different regions in our state and in the southeast. It was tested for a long time prior to its release. The stability of its performance over the environments has been good and that differs from some oats that are on the market.”
Ray discusses other desirable traits of the Graham variety:
“A few more traits that are interesting about this oat, it has excellent test weight that is consistently high. It’s also not as tall, so it’s good in terms of lodging.”
Seed for the new variety has just become available and can be picked up at Mixon Seed Company in Oranageburg.
Assistant Director of Clemson University Extension, Chris Ray.