Triticale is a bred created by crossing rye (Secale cereale) with wheat (Triticum durum/Triticum aestivum). The awned ears resemble the rye ears more than the wheat ears. The number of flowers per step is limited to 2-3. The leaf and especially the floor of the ear is similarly strong to wheat. The plants can grow to lengths of 140cm. The longish corns are larger than wheat and smaller than rye corns, their colour is brown-ish.
The first triticale originated 1876. Back then H.S.Wilson from Scotland crossed hard wheat (Triticum durum) with rye (Secale cereale). The aim was to combine the good traits of wheat, the good bake-ability and its high yield, with the lower disease susceptibility of rye. After 1937 colchicine facilitated the development of crossings. Colchicine spontaneously doubles the number of chromosomes. Since the beginning thirties one also uses the common wheat (Triticum aestivum) as a crossing partner. Crossing triticale and triticale is also common.
Triticale cultivation resembles that of wheat. The plant is characterized by its high adaptability, low requirements and is also suitable for cultivation at high elevations. Today there is the hazard that the spread of cultivation areas increases the disease susceptibility.
Winter triticale is more commonly cultivated than summer triticale. Triticale crossings by hard wheat (Triticum durum) and rye are mainly used as animal food as their baking properties aren’t as good, like the crossing of soft wheat (Triticum aestivum) and rye.