Harker, K. N., O'Donovan, J. T., Smith, E. G., Johnson, E. N., Peng, G., Willenborg, C. J., Gulden, R. H., Mohr, R., Gill, K. S. and Grenkow, L. A. 2015. Seed size and seeding rate effects on canola emergence, development, yield and seed weight. Can. J. Plant Sci. 95: 1-8. Canola (Brassica napus L.) is the most common dicotyledonous crop in Canada. Here we determine the effect of canola seed size and seeding rate on canola emergence, development, yield and seed weight. In 2013, direct-seeded experiments were conducted at nine western Canada locations. Four canola seed sizes (1000-seed weights ranging from 3.96 to 5.7 g) and one un-sized treatment (4.4 g average) were seeded at two rates (75 and 150 seeds m-2). Higher seeding rates led to higher canola emergence and stubble density at harvest. Higher seeding rates also increased early crop biomass, 1000-seed weights and seed oil content and reduced days to start of flowering and days to crop maturity. Seed size effects on canola emergence, yield or seed quality were not significant. Increasing seed size had a positive linear association with early canola biomass and 1000-seed weights, whereas, both days to flowering and days to the end of flowering had a negative linear association with seed size. Greater biomass from large seeds increases crop competition with weeds and also hastens flowering, shortens the flowering period and reduces the risk that canola will be exposed to high temperatures that can negatively impact flowering and pod development.
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