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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Effect of Physiological Maturity on Moisture, Oil Content, and Linoleic Acid Content of Sunflower Hybrids

Authors
item Rehder, Dale
item Miller, Jerry

Submitted to: Proceedings Sunflower Research Workshop
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: January 29, 1999
Publication Date: N/A

Interpretive Summary: The knowledge of the growth cycle of sunflower hybrids is critical for sunflower producers in their decision process to choose correct hybrids that will take advantage of the environment to achieve high yields, high oil content, and high oil quality. A process to classify sunflower hybrids into maturity groups was studied and accepted by the sunflower industry by which all hybrids would be given a maturity rating. The objectives of this study were to determine the % moisture, oil content, and linoleic acid content as selected hybrids matured and then to compare these quality factors with the visual physiological maturity date. The date of visual physiological maturity of twelve hybrids corresponded to 21 to 26 % moisture. The dry-down moisture in seed of hybrids was different as indicated by the % change in moisture between the first and later dates of sampling. Earlier hybrids did not necessarily have the fastest dry- down. There was no difference in oil content between hybrids in seed sampled from plants that had reached the visual physiological maturity date and seed sampled at harvest. However, linoleic acid content of seed increased 2 to 4 % for seed sampled on the date of visual physiological maturity compared with seed sampled at harvest. These results indicate that disease infection or frost damage affecting plants on or before September 1 could drastically lower the oil and linoleic acid content of seed.

Technical Abstract: The knowledge of the growth cycle of sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) hybrids is critical for sunflower produces in their decision process to choose correct hybrids that will take advantage of the environment to achieve high yields, high oil content, and high oil quality. After studying 12 hybrids planted over 28 locations, a recommendation of four Maturity Groups was accepted by the sunflower industry. However, this study did not observe the moisture %, oil content, or linoleic acid content of these hybrids as they matured. The objectives of this study were to determine the moisture %, oil content, and linoleic acid content as selected hybrids matured and then to compare these quality factors with the visual maturity date. The date of visual physiological maturity of the twelve hybrids corresponded to 21 to 26 % moisture, lower than what was expected. Earlier hybrids did not necessarily have the fastest dry- down. There was no difference in oil content between hybrids in seed sampled from plants that had reached the visual physiological maturity date and seed sampled at harvest. However, linoleic acid content of seed increased 2 to 4 % for seed sampled on the date of visual physiological maturity compared with seed sampled at harvest. These results indicate that disease infection or frost damage affecting plants on or before September 1 could drastically lower the oil and linoleic acid content of seed.

Last Modified: 12/18/2014
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