Blending Varieties Peanut Notes No. 65 2024

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I had a question about either blending varieties together before planting or planting alternating rows of varieties and then harvesting everything together. That practices was used many many years ago in multiple crops to spread risk. We looked at this about 15 years ago with NC-V 11 and Gregory. The question now is with Bailey II and Emery. What happened then, and what I suspect now, is that yield and market grades will end up being about average compared with each variety planted alone. If you did this in many fields and compared the yield of the mixture to each variety alone, in most cases one of the varieties alone would do better than the other variety alone and likely better than the blend of the two varieties. We do better when we strategically put the most appropriate variety in the environment that favors its strengths or is at least better than alternative varieties (environment is not just weather but soil conditions, irrigation, disease, etc.) The goal with the NC-V 11/Gregory blend was to try to increase market grades over NC-V 11. Here is the citation for that work and a brief. I don’t think the message would venture too far from this for blends of Bailey II and Emery.

Jordan, D. L., and Faircloth, J. 2009. Peanut response to blends of the cultivars Gregory and NC-V 11. Online. Crop Management doi:10.1094/CM-2009-0720-02-RS.

Planting cultivar blends of peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.) may provide an alternative to pure plantings of cultivars. Although blends of peanut cultivars have been evaluated previously, these experiments were conducted with cultivars that are no longer grown commercially. Research was conducted in North Carolina to compare pod yield, economic value, net return for two peanut pricing structures, and market grade characteristics for pure plantings of the Virginia market type cultivars Gregory and NC-V 11 and a blend of these two cultivars. Results from this study revealed no major advantages of planting blends of the cultivars Gregory and NC-V 11 compared with pure plantings of these cultivars. Pod yield, economic value, and net return of the cultivar blend were no higher than when at least one of the cultivars was planted separately. Although the cultivar blend produced a higher percentage of farmer stock fancy pods and extra large kernels than NC-V 11 alone, a corresponding decrease in these market grade characteristics was noted when the blend was compared with Gregory alone. Further research is needed under a wider diversity of weather and management situations including cultivars with greater genetic diversity to understand possible benefits of cultivar blends of Virginia market type peanut in North Carolina and Virginia.