Planting-date Effects on Early maturing Pigeonpea in a Short-season Environment

in HortTechnology

Determinate, photoperiod-insensitive genotypes of pigeonpea [Cajanus cajan (L.) Millsp.] have production potential for the short growing seasons of the temperate region. A 3-year field study was conducted to determine the effect of three planting dates on the growth and development of pigeonpea in Missouri. Seeds of four genotypes, ICPL 87 Isolation (85k), ICPL 85010, ICPL 85024, and ICPL 8304 were planted 1 May (PD1), 15 May (PD2), and 1 June (PD3). Germination of the earliest-planted seeds was <32%, but increased to an average of 57% for PD3. Earliest-planted seeds generally took the longest time to first flowering and harvest. The initial fresh pod harvest of plants from PD1 and PD2 overlapped. The earliest harvest was produced by ICPL 85024 from PD2 at 91 days (1300 degree-days C) after planting. Over the 3 years, the genotypes in PD1 produced the highest fresh pod weights (205-357 g/plant) and longest pods. Those of PD3 produced the lowest pod weight. The seed number per pod (three to four) and weight of 100 seeds (16-22 g) were generally unaffected by planting dates.

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