[print this page]

Variety Performance Results for Dry Beans
March 30, 2009

The 2008 season started out cool, followed by a rainy fall which caused trouble for most crops, including dry beans.  This resulted in pod shattering, seed sprouting and deteriorating seed quality, according to Dr. Juan Osorno dry bean breeder at North Dakota State University.  Despite these problems, he said the yields were still competitive in most places.

Osorno said his trials were good despite the environmental conditions but did not consider 2008 a normal year. We had lines that performed really well in one place and then in another location they were at the bottom of the tables. These are very strange results, because usually lines will keep stable across environments. Osorno said they were able to harvest almost all of their trials, with the exception of Prosper, ND, where he lost 85% of their experiments.


Many diseases were observed in NDSUs trials this year. Osorno said he generally finds brown spot and halo blight but this year he also found rust in his trials at the end of the season, even affecting resistant cultivars, which surprised them. (see Markell article, page 8). Another disease, root rot, frequently shows up in Perham, MN each year. Osorno usually asks his cooperator to give him a field that has a history of root rot so he can test his material more extensively.

NDSU Varieties

Osorno reviewed the NDSU releases: Lariat, Stampede, ND-307, Avalanche and Eclipse. In the Forest River area, Stampede was the highest yielding variety out of the 17 varieties tested. He was pleased with the results of the varieties and recommends growers look at the CV and LSD because it will give them a lot of information to analyze the tables. (CV  20 is usually good and below 10 is excellent.)

How does NDSU decide which varieties to concentrate on?

Osorno relies on the growers survey that he distributes to determine varietal testing focus. All of the varieties that have some significant acreage in the region are included. Current NDSU dry bean variety locations are Hatton-ND: Pinto, Navy, and Misc.; Forest River-ND: Pinto and Navy; Prosper-ND: Pinto, Navy, and Misc.; Perham-MN: Miscellaneous, Park Rapids-MN: Miscellaneous; and ND Research and Extension Centers: Carrington (Foster Co.), Hettinger (Adams Co.), Langdon (Cavalier-Pembina Co.), Minot (Ward Co.), Oakes (Dickey Co.) and Williston (Williams Co.).
Below are some of the performance results of the NDSU varieties:

  • Eclipse is the best black bean in most of the trials
  • In most cases, NDSU lines were among the top 5 varieties
  • Lariat keeps showing superior yields when grown in the right conditions (the late maturity could be a concern for some growers)
  • Stampede did well under drought stress
  • ND-307 had the most variable results across locations
  • Avalanche also showed variable results across locations (but MN: 3550 lbs/acre)
  • Maverick had germination problems, so be cautious when interpreting data.

Choosing Varieties

When choosing your variety, Osorno stresses to try and see what variety is best for your conditions and/or philosophy. When it comes to variety selections, growers have a lot of options and that is very important. Osorno recommends looking for trends instead of a single year when choosing a variety. Try to see what happened with one line across several years instead of one years history. Be sure to use LSD to make realistic comparisons. Also, growers can refer to North Dakota Dry Bean Performance Testing 2008, compiled by Hans Kandel for more details and locations at

Dr. Juan Osorno is a dry bean breeder at North Dakota State University.


Other Headlines

Email Newsletter icon, E-mail Newsletter icon, Email List icon, E-mail List icon Sign up for our Email Newsletter
For Email Marketing you can trust


Northarvest Bean Growers Association | 50072 East Lake Seven Road | Frazee, MN 56544
Ph: 218-334-6351 | Fax: 218-334-6360 | Email: