Possibilities of cultivation of red canary grass, industrial hemp cereals for energy
Jõgeva Plant Breeding Institute
1) Characterisation and comparision of crops and varieties in their suitability for different
uses in bioenergy production;
2) Analyse of availability of cultivation mashinery and agrotechnology in different
3) Analyse of impact of different bioenergy crops on maintenance of soil fertility;
4) Analyse of accordance of production of bioenergy crops with EU cross-complience rules;
5) Analyse of limiting and predisposing factors of production of bioenergy crops (incl
6) Environmental influences of energy crops from produstion until the waste management;
7) Give the recommendations for cultivation
1. Initiation of breeding programme in red canary grass for energy production.
Cultivation of red canary grass for bioenergy production has several advantages: taking into the
use of currently sett o side and non-used lands, creatuion of new work positions in urban areas,
positive environmental impact, low demand for specific mashinery. The limiting factor is high
yield losses of currently used varieties what are developed for foder production. The use of stalktyped,
lodging resistant varieties will substantially increase the productivity and efficiency of
cultivation. Initial breeding collection of seed samples collected from natural ecotypes in 36
locations was created.
2. Analyse of suitability of cereals (barley, oats, wheat, rye, triticale) and their varieties for use in
bioenergy production. Straw and grain production and suitability for energy production.
The yield and grain/straw ratio of most common cereal species (barley, oats, wheat, rye, triticale)
was analysed. The highest straw yields could by obtained in cultivation of winter wheat and
winter rye varieties. Winter rye is also characterisised by highest variation in straw yield between
the varieties. Oat and barley straw are not suitable for burning in bioenergy production because
of the chemical composition. Too high content of K, Ca, Mg and C in the straw causes
technological problems with ash in burning and removal of too high amount of elements and
organic matter from the field. High starch content in the grain makes winter rye and winter wheat
beeing most suitable crops for bioethanol production. The guidelines for starting the breeding
program and selection of most suited wheat and rye varieties for bioethanol production were
established. For production of high-starch grain the agrotechnology of cereal cultivation has to be
3.Suitability of hemp varieties for bioenergy – yield and energy production.
The biomass yield and energy production of hemp variety Santhica 27 was tested at different
fertilizer inputs and in different soils. The harvestable energy production of hemp was in same
level with the best cereal varieties and with red ganary grass. Hight production cost of hemp
(high price of the seeds, demand for specific mashinery) makes the hemp less profitable for
energy production than cereals or red canary grass.