Eight edamame (Glycine max) cultivars were evaluated in the field in 2002, 2003, and 2004 to determine suitability for growing in central Pennsylvania. Data collection included plant populations (percent stand), marketable and unmarketable yields and edamame pod and bean quality indicators. Plant populations varied by year and cultivar and were generally below 80%. The effect of temperature on seedling emergence, and therefore plant populations, was evaluated for four edamame cultivars by using growth chambers programmed with varying day/night temperature regimes. Seedling emergence varied by cultivar and was generally below 80% with two exceptions. When grown in a 70/60 °F day/night temperature regime, 'Butterbeans', and 'Early Hakucho' exceeded 80% seedling emergence. In the field trial, plant populations affected marketable yields. Pod and bean quality were dependent on cultivar. Results indicated that 'Butterbeans', 'Early Hakucho', 'Green Legend', 'Shironomai', 'Butterbaby', and 'Lucky Lion' appear promising for growing in Pennsylvania based on pod and bean quality. However, the issue of poor seedling emergence and plant populations presents a major constraint to commercial production and needs to be studied further.
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