NEW for 2019
Avena macrostachya is a type of perennial wild oat. A citation from an article in Economic Botany 1991 states “Avena macrostachya …… is narrowly endemic to two mountain chains in northeastern Algeria, the Aures and the Djurdjura, where it is found at high altitudes. It is taxonomically isolated within the genus, showing a number of primitive features, including perennial habit”. I grew these as a spring planted annual and did not see any regrowth after harvest here in Northern Indiana.
I started my seed as transplants in late March and set out into garden beds on April 22nd. The plants grew well and were very healthy right up until harvest. They averaged about 4 foot tall and had no issues with lodging during periods of heavy rainfall. I harvested on July 4th. While not nearly as productive as domesticated oats, I was still impressed with the yields, especially given that this is a wild oat. The grains are hulled with an oat seed inside that is about 1/3 the size of cultivated hulless oats.
There has been interest in breeding Avena macrostachya with cultivated oats, due to its tolerance for low temperatures. The possibility for a fall planted oat that can survive our Northern Indiana winters would be a wonderful addition.
- Avena macrostachya
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