Since 1956, Noble Research Institute has released 25 forage varieties.
Plant breeding is the art and science of changing plant genetics in order to create new varieties with increased productivity or value-added traits, such as drought tolerance, nutritional value or disease resistance. Noble Research Institute develops improved varieties of small grains (wheat, rye, triticale and oat) and perennial cool-season forages (tall fescue and alfalfa).
Most small grains breeding programs in the U.S. are focused on grain yield and quality. However, Noble’s small grains breeding program develops cultivars with improved forage qualities, better fall production, and the ability to recover after grazing with better overall forage yields. Perennial cool-season forage breeding aims to help fill the forge gap when bermudagrass is dormant in the Great Plains thus reducing the need to feed hay over the winter. Traits selected for include grazing persistence, heat and drought tolerance, winter survival, high biomass, seed yield, forage quality, and disease resistance.
(co-release with USDA Agricultural Research Service Grazinglands Laboratory, Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station, Missouri Agricultural Experiment Station and Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station)
(co-release with University of Georgia)