Agronomic performance of naked oat (Avena nuda L.) and faba bean intercropping

Agnieszka Klimek-Kopyra1*, Bogdan Kulig1, Andrzej Oleksy1, and Tadeusz Zając1
The most common cereals for faba bean (Vicia faba L.) used in intercrops is conventional oat (Avena sativa L.). An alternative to oat may be naked oat (Avena nuda L.), whose oil content and quality is double. Here, intercropping of naked oat with two different faba bean cultivars (determinate-high tannin and indeterminate-low tannin) was compared with sole crops of each species in 2006-2008. The treatments were: sole naked oat at 500 kernels m2, indeterminate sole faba bean at 50 seeds m2, determinate sole faba bean at 70 seeds m2, and an additive series of 25%, 50%, and 75% of faba bean seeding rate mixed with the naked oat seeding rate. Our results demonstrated that intercropping increased the Land Equivalent Ratio by +3% to +9% over sole cropping. Raising the faba bean seeding rate in a mixture from 25% to 75% reduced oat grain yield from 630 (determinate cultivar) to 760 kg ha-1 (indeterminate cultivar) but increased faba bean grain yield from 760 kg ha-1. Higher yield and leaf area index (LAI) and photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) values show that the indeterminate cultivar of faba bean is more suitable in mixture with naked oat. The high value of competition index (CR > 1) indicates domination and aggressiveness of faba bean towards naked oat. Regardless of cultivar type, mixture of faba bean with naked oat is less productive than pure sowing.
Keywords: Competition index, Vicia faba.
1Agriculture University in Krakow, Institute of Plant Production, AlejaMickiewicza 21, 31-120, Krakow, Poland. *Corresponding author (klimek.a@wp.pl).