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Stone Age. It is used for mush and cracked wheat, and as fodder for cattle, rather than for bread.
79. Spelt (Tr. sativum spelta Hackel).—Was largely and widely cultivated in ancient times. Hackel states that it was the chief grain in Egypt and Greece and was cultivated everywhere throughout the Roman Empire and distributed through its colonies. It is now sparingly cultivated in Europe except in northern Spain, where it is still an important crop. At present it is used almost exclusively as a stock food. It is not cultivated in this country except in an experimental way. There are both winter and spring varieties, but the winter beardless spelt, a white-spiked, awnless variety, is said to be the most profitable. Under ordinary conditions the yield is not equal to common wheat. Hackel states that it is more certain, liable to fewer diseases and not at all subject to the attacks of birds. Carleton says that it is especially liable to rust. He gives its desirable qualities as power to hold the grain in the spike, constancy in Spelt. fertility, and hardiness of certain winter (One-half natural size.) varieties. The brittleness of the spike is an undesirable quality.
The Garton Brothers (England) have obtained good results by crossing spelt on common wheat to prevent shattering at harvest.
80. Emmer (Tr, sat. dicoccum Hackel).-Hackel states that this subspecies has been “cultivated from the most ancient times but always more sparingly than spelt and at present (1885) only in S. Germany, Switzerland, Spain, Servia and Italy." Carleton (1900) says: “Very little, if any, true spelt is grown in,
1 The Basis for the Improvement of American Wheats. By M. A. Carleton. TJ. S. Dept. of Agr., Div. Veg. Phys. and Path. Bul. 24, p. 34. . .
Russia, though a rather large quantity of emmer is produced each year.” This species is often incorrectly called spelt in the United States and the two species are thus sometimes confused.
“The plants of this species are pithy or hollow, with an inner wall of pith; leaves sometimes rather broad, and usually velvety hairy; heads almost always bearded, very compact, and much flattened on the two-rowed sides. The appearance in the field
is therefore quite different from that of spelt. The spikelets, however, look considerably like those of spelt, but differ principally in the presence always of a short pointed pedicel. This pedicel, which is really a portion of the rachis of the head, if attached at all to the spelt spikelets, is always very blunt and much thicker. Besides, the emmer spikelets are flattened on the inner side, and not arched as in spelt, so that they do not stand out from the rachis as the spelt spikelets do, but lie close to it and to each other, forming a solidly compact head. The spikelets are usually two. grained, one grain being located a little higher than the other. The outer chaff is boat-shaped, keeled, and toothed at the apex. The grain is somewhat similar
to that of spelt, but is Common wheat: Turkish red variety on the left; Red usually harder, more comFultz variety on the right.
pressed at the sides, and
redder in color. “For the production of new varieties by hybridization emmer has qualities similar to those of spelt, but still more valuable. At the same time emmer, besides possessing harder grain, is more resistant to drought, and usually rather resistant to orange leaf rust. It is well adapted for cultivation in the northern States of the Plains and has already proved very valuable as a hardy forage plant in that region,
besides giving a good yield of grain per acre. Almost all varieties are spring grown. Of other countries emmer is chiefly cultivated in Russia, Germany, Spain, Italy and Servia, and to some extent in France. The emmer of this country is descended from seed originally obtained chiefly from Russia, where a considerable portion of the food of the Volga region is a sort of gruel (“kasha") made from hulled and cracked emmer.
“The desirable qualities furnished by this group of wheats are:
81. Common Wheat (Tr. sat. vulgare Hackel).—As the name implies, this is the subspecies commonly grown throughout the wheat growing districts of the world. Its high yielding power and its excellence for breadmaking are the special qualities which have made it the leading cultivated sort.
82. Club or Square Head Wheat (Tr. sat. compactum Hackel).-- This subspecies differs from common wheat principally in the shortness and compactness of the head and the shortness (usually about two feet) and stiffness of the straw. It is less liable to shatter before or during harvest and less liable to lodge than common wheat, and is thus especially adapted to the Pacific Coast States and those Rocky Mountain States where the wheat stands on the field for some time after it is ripe and is cut with combined header and thresher. Aside Club wheat.
(One-half natural size.) from the regions named it is cultivated chiefly" in Chile, Turkestan and Abyssinia. There are both spring and winter varieties. The latter are adapted only to comparatively mild climates. The quality of the grain does not differ materially from that of the softer varieties of common wheat.
1 The Basis for the Improvement of American Wheats. By M. A. Carleton 0. S. Dept. of Agr., Div. of Veg. Phys. and Path. Bil. 24 (1900), pp. 34-35.
83. Poulard Wheat (Tr. sat. turgidum Hackel).—This sub species is not grown in this country except in an experimental way. It is grown chiefly in the hot dry regions bordering the Mediterranean and Black Seas. It is frequently called English wheat, although it is not grown in England. It is so closely allied to durum wheat as to be hardly distinguished from it, especially in some varieties. It differs chiefly in having a broader spike, shorter beards, shorter and less dense grains and stiffer straw. Some varieties of this subspecies have branching spikes and are known as Egyptian wheat or the wheat of miracle (Tr. compositum L.). Tr. compositum is simply a sport and is of no value.
84. Durum Wheat (Tr. sat. durum Hackel).— The varieties of this subspecies are commonly referred to in this country as
macaroni wheat, because they have been principally used in Europe for the manu. facture of semolina, the manufactured material from which macaroni and other forms of edible pastes are produced. Durum wheat is supe
rior to common wheat Curing semolina in the open air. Factory of F. Scaramelli Fils, Marseilles, France. This
for this purpose on ac
gluten content and greater density. The South Dakota Station has shown that bread of fine flavor with a dark color somewhat resembling rye bread can be made from it. Millers generally avoid buying it for ordinary bread flour. It is hoped that the manufacture of macaroni may be stimulated in this country, which it is believed would increase its use, because freshness is an important attribute of high class macaroni. Heretofore most of the macaroni has been imported, the domestic article not having been altogether satisfactory. This has been due in part, it is believed, to lack of good macaroni wheat and in part to lack of technical skill in the manufacture of the semolina."
“ The macaroni wheats are tall, with broad, smooth leaves. The heads are heavily bearded, being much more so than any of the ordinary wheats, and the plant when bearded has much the appearance of barley. The heads are large and vary in color from light yellow to almost black, depending upon the variety. The kernels are large, very hard, having less starch than common wheat. They vary from light yellow to reddish yellow in color. The habits of growth of durum'wheats adapt them to regions of light rainfall. They have great ability to withstand drouth and heat but require a rich soil, although they are notably tolerant of alkali. In some mild climates durum wheats are sown in the fall, but generally they are grown as spring wheat.” 2
The natural habitat of durum wheat is about the same as that of poulard wheat. In Spain it is more largely grown than any other type.
Durum wheat. It is also grown considerably
(One-half natural size.) in South and Central America, whence it has found its way into Texas under the name of Nicaragua wheat. Another variety has been grown successfully in parts of the Northwest and Canada under the name of Wild Goose. The varieties of durum wheat tested at the stations have
1 Manufacture of Semolina and Macaroni. U.S. Dept. of Agr., Bu. of Pl. Ind Bul. 20.
- Neb. Bul. 78, p. 4.