Natural variation among barley kernels

Silja Home, Annika Wilhelmson, Jussi Tammisola, Johanna Husman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


The variation of barley kernels was studied among and within small breeders' plots and within individual barley plants. Differences between the basal, middle, and apical regions of the ear, and differences among individual kernels from different positions in the ear were examined. Kernel weight and protein content varied widely in single kernels of Alexis barleys grown in small plots in different European countries. Sieving tests of three regional fractions of the ear indicated that the kernels of apical fractions were smaller than those of the other two regions. This was also clearly demonstrated by weights of single kernels. The average protein contents of the three regional fractions of the ear did not differ significantly in most cases. However, the variation within one ear and between main and secondary stems of the same plants was of the same magnitude as that among different plants. The β-glucan contents did not vary significantly between the three regional fractions, among individual kernels, or between main and secondary stems. Germination behavior determined by traditional methods did not vary significantly within the ear. However, the Germination Index of the apical fractions was, in some cases, slightly higher than that of the other fractions of the ear.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-51
JournalJournal of the American Society of Brewing Chemists
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1997
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Barley
  • Ear
  • Homogeneity
  • Kernel size
  • proteins
  • Single kernel


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