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Albert Lea Seed

Products Trial Data

New Winter Ryes Deliver Big Yields

Interest in small grains, whether as cover crops or rotational options for grain or forage, continues to grow. This is particularly true among organic and non-GMO producers. As we move into the fall planting season for winter small grains, Albert Lea Seed has a variety of winter small grain options to consider, but we would like to highlight two winter rye options here.

The first is Brasetto hybrid winter rye, a non-GMO variety introduced last year. Brasetto is an extremely high-yielding, low-input winter rye that will commonly yield 30-90 bushels more than common VNS varieties. Strong agronomic features include uniform height and maturity, deeper roots with more tillering and excellent lodging resistance. Brasetto is also a low ergot hybrid.

We’ve received four yield reports from growers in Iowa and Minnesota who harvested Brasetto this summer, with yields ranging from 112 bu/A to 130 bu/A.

New for 2018, we are offering a high-yielding, organic winter rye, ND Dylan. This is a tall variety with good straw strength for excellent standability, very good winter hardiness and high test weight.


One Organic Grower’s Experience with Brasetto Rye


Tom Frantzen and his wife, Irene, run a diversified organic farm in Chickasaw County, Iowa, where they raise organic hogs, cattle, corn, soybeans, hay and small grain. This year, Tom planted some Brasetto hybrid rye. Here are his observations on Brasetto’s performance.

“Brasetto has real potential to help with organic weed control. It completely overwhelmed the worst weed I know of, Giant Ragweed, in 2017. It also covered the soil and completely stopped erosion.

“The straw is very strong, and the crop withstood a windstorm that severely damaged our corn crop and tore the roof off a house next door! That was followed by a 4-inch rain. The 4-inch rain did not crush that heavy windrow to the ground, as the tough stubble held the windrow up and the air then dried the swath out. There were no harvest problems despite the conditions.

“The crop is VERY responsive to soil fertility. Where the crop had good fertility, our JD 6600 can barely handle the swath. We all agreed that a much larger machine was needed. Grain yields were over 6,000 pounds per acre, and other 2017 reports are even higher. Kansas State has four reports of grain yields over 8,300 pounds per acre.

“The grain samples sent for analysis came back with very few toxins. Ergot, the real problem toxin in rye, came back at less than .01%. The full amino acid protein profile is very favorable, especially with 35% more lysine than corn. The energy level of the grain is high and the fiber is low.

“Straw yields were excellent. A large square baler could not handle two swaths raked together. The straw quality looks very good.

“With $215 land cost entered, using 2017 ISU custom field work prices, and with a $40 an acre combining charge the cost of production was 5 cents a pound.”

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