Graham, a new oat variety, was released this week by Clemson University and will be available in limited quantity for growers for the fall planting season, according to Chris Ray, director of the South Carolinma Crop Improvement Association.

The new oat variety is named for Doyce Graham, a small-grains breeder at Clemson University from 1966 to 2003. Graham also served as Agronomy Department Chairman from 2000 to 2002.

The Graham oat variety has provided a double bonus in extensive testing in South Carolina.

It has produced slightly higher test weights (pounds per bushel) and consistently 20 bushels per acre more yield than the most commonly used oat varieties planted in the Carolinas.

“Usually increased test weights come with lower yields and higher yields come with lower test weights, but Graham has been really good in both areas,” Ray says.

In most years on most test sites, Graham has produced 130 to 150 bushels of oats per acre over multiple years of testing. It also has shown less of a tendency to lodge and produces more seed than other comparable varieties, Ray says.

Though there are a few varieties that can produce yields comparable to Graham, Ray says, none have the combination of high test weights (32 pounds per bushel) and high yields. The new variety also matures earlier than most of the other high yielding oat varieties available to growers in the Carolinas.

Ray says only 16 acres of foundation seed stock were grown this year and some of that will be held back to build seed supply.

Still there will be a limited amount of seed available to growers this fall.

Growers interested in learning more about Graham oats or want to purchase seed can contact Ray at cry@clemson. edu or by calling the South Carolina Crop Improvement Association at 864-656-4080.