Journal of Agriculture & Life Sciences

ISSN 2375-4214 (Print), 2375-4222 (Online) DOI: 10.30845/jals

Evaluation of Promising Malting Barley Varieties Using Agronomic and Quality Traits in Kenya
Okacha J.S. Jairus, Prof. Elmada O. Auma, Dr. Lucas Ngode

A study to select promising malting barley varieties was conducted at the University of Eldoret and Mau Narok in Kenya from June 2011 to July 2012. Two varieties due for release were compared with one commercial variety. Data on yield and quality components was subjected to ANOVA using SAS. Means were separated by LSD at α = 0.05. HKBL 1385-13 had superior grain yield than the control variety at both the Mau Narok and University of Eldoret sites by 500 kg ha-1 (25%) and 1400 kg ha-1 (37.8%) respectively. HKBL 1512-5 had significantly higher grain yields than the control at the Mau Narok site by 400 kg ha-1, but at the University of Eldoret, it had inferior yields, shorter spike length and a lower number of grains spike-1. However, it had consistently heavier grains throughout the study. Both HKBL 1512-5 (2.33 %) and HKBL 1385-13 (2.21 %) accumulated grain N-content beyond the acceptable level of 2.2 % at the Mau Narok site compared to 1.97 % and 1.87 % respectively at the University of Eldoret. Site differences were observed for the proportion of maltable grains. HKBL 1512-5 has inferior agronomic traits at both sites, except for plant stand establishment, 1000 kernel weight and % - nitrogen accumulation in the grain at the Mau Narok site. The superior grain size of test variety HKBL 1512-5 can be used to improve barley varieties with superior yields but with inferior kernel size. Choice of appropriate variety for Mau Narok could be determined by the 1000 grain weight and % - nitrogen accumulation in the grain, whereas, at the University of Eldoret, variety choice can be based on grain yield, the number of productive tillers per plant and grains per spike.

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