Barley and Alternative Crop Breeding
257W Johnson Hall
PO Box 646420
Pullman WA 99164-6420 USA
Curriculum Vitae (pdf)
Ph.D., Plant Breeding and Genetics, Washington State University, 2007
M.S., Crop Science, Washington State University, 2004
B.S., Biology, The Colorado College, 1994
AFS/SoilS 445/545: Field Analysis of Sustainable Food Systems
AFS 201: Systems Skills Development
AFS 302: Introduction to Agroecology
AFS/SoilS 101: Organic Farming and Gardening
I lead the barley and alternative crop breeding program at WSU. Our goal is to increase the genetic- and bio-diversity of cropping systems across Washington State through the development of new cultivars and ecologically-rooted production practices. Within barley, we continually work towards the release of climate resilient, disease resistant and high yielding feed, food and malt cultivars. Food barley development focuses on the improvement of nutritional characteristics in the emerging food barley market class, and we contribute to this exciting field of study through research on β-glucan and hulless traits, and through new projects on the genetics of tocols, phenols and mineral concentration in barley. In addition to barley breeding and genetics, our group focuses on quinoa breeding and agroecology for organic systems, buckwheat nutrition, spelt and perennial wheat breeding, amaranth genetics, and proso millet varietal selection and agronomy. General traits/systems of importance across the crops we study include nutritional value, heat tolerance, drought tolerance, resistance to rusts and mildews, intercropping, deficit irrigation, and evolutionary participatory breeding.
Lu, L., K. Murphy, B.-K. Baik (2013). Genotypic variation in nutritional composition of buckwheat groats and husks. Cereal Chemistry 90: 132-137.
Abi-Ghanem, R., L. Carpenter-Boggs, R.T. Koenig, J.L. Ullman, K. Murphy, C.D. Pannkuk (2013). Access to agricultural inputs, technology and information, communicating with farmers, and the role of women in agriculture: Perceptions of Iraq extension agents. Journal of International Agricultural and Extension Education 20: 6-18.
Murphy, K., A.H. Carter, S.S. Jones (2013). Evolutionary Breeding and Climate Change, In: Genomics and Breeding for Climate-Resilient Crops, Vol. 1 Concepts and Strategies. C. Kole (ed.); Springer.
Arterburn, M., K. Murphy, S.S. Jones (2012). Organic Wheat Breeding. In: Organic Crop Breeding, E.T. Lammerts van Bueren and J.R. Myers (eds.), Wiley-Blackwell. Hoboken, New Jersey, USA. ISBN: 978-0-470-95858-2.
Jakumar, N., S. Snapp, S., K. Murphy, K., S.S. Jones (2012). Agronomic assessment of perennial wheat and perennial rye as cereal crops. Agronomy Journal 104: 1716-1726.
Hayes, R.C., M.T. Newell, L.R. DeHaan, K. Murphy, S. Crane, M.R. Norton, L.J. Wade, M. Newberry, M. Fahim, S.S. Jones, T.S. Cox, P.J. Larkin (2012). Perennial cereal crops: An initial evaluation of wheat derivatives. Field Crops Research 133: 68-89.
Murphy, K., L.A. Hoagland, L. Yan, M. Colley, S.S. Jones (2011). Genotype × environment interactions for mineral concentration in grain of organically grown spring wheat. Agronomy Journal 103: 1734-1741.
Döring, T.F., S. Knapp, G. Kovacs, K. Murphy, M.S. Wolfe (2011). Evolutionary plant breeding in cereals – Into a new era. Sustainability 3: 1944-1971.
Turner, S.F., C.A. Benedict, H. Darby, L. Hoagland, P. Simonson, J.R. Sirrine, K. Murphy (2011). Challenges and opportunities for organic hop production in the United States. Agronomy Journal 103: 1645-1654.
Dawson, J.C., K. Murphy, D.R. Huggins, S.S. Jones (2011). Evaluation of winter wheat breeding lines for traits related to nitrogen use under organic management. Organic Agriculture 1: 65-80.
Matanguihan, G.J.B., K. Murphy, S.S. Jones (2011). Control of common bunt in organic wheat. Plant Disease 95: 92-103.
Lammerts van Bueren, E.T., S.S. Jones, L. Tamm, K. Murphy, J.R. Myers, C. Leifert, M.M. Messmer (2011). The need to breed crop varieties suitable for organic farming using wheat, tomato and broccoli as examples: A review. NJAS – Wageningen Journal of Life Sciences 58: 193-205.
Murphy, K., S.R. Lyon, K.A. Balow, S.S. Jones (2010). Post-sexual cycle regrowth and grain yield in Thinopyrum elongatum x Triticum aestivum amphiploids. Plant Breeding 129: 480-483.
Jones, S.S., S.R. Lyon, K.A. Balow, M.A. Gollnick, K. Murphy, J. Kuehner, X.M. Chen, T.D. Murray, D.A. Engle, and K.G. Campbell (2010). Registration of ‘Xerpha’ wheat. Journal of Plant Registrations 4:137-140.
More publications (pdf)
5 Things to Know About Quinoa
This week, a new food is appearing on Passover tables around the country. The Orthodox Union, the authority on kosher foods, recently ruled that certain brands of quinoa could carry its “Kosher for Passover” symbol. Read more
LA Times: Foundation grants first fellowships in organic plant breeding in U.S.
Clif Bar Family Foundation has recently awarded the first fellowships in organic plant breeding in the United States. Read more
‘NPR, The Salt’
Can Quinoa Farming Go Global Without Leaving Andeans Behind?
Will Quinoa be the new corn . . . that might be a stretch . . . listen to this story
WSU releases new barley variety honoring longtime plant breeder Steve Lyon
MOUNT VERNON, Wash. – After more than 22 years of breeding wheat for Washington State University, Steve Lyon never expected to make a name for himself in the barley field. But this spring’s release of ‘Lyon,’ a new variety of barley, is one way his colleagues in Pullman have chosen to recognize his long-term contributions to small grains research.
“As a graduate student in Stephen Jones’ winter wheat program, I worked with Steve Lyon on a daily basis,” said WSU barley breeder Kevin Murphy . . . Read more
Research cultivates seeds of opportunity
Western innovator: Researcher shines light on quinoa
PULLMAN, Wash.–Every week, Kevin Murphy gets e-mails from farmers interested in growing quinoa.
There isn’t enough seed available, so Murphy intends to grow more of the popular specialty crop next spring on a half-dozen farms in Washington and Oregon.
Quinoa will never rival wheat’s overall popularity, Murphy said, but it has the potential to become an important specialty crop for the Northwest.
New WSU feed barley has disease resistance package (Muir)
Washington barley growers will have another new variety to consider next spring.
Muir is a spring, two-row feed barley developed by Washington State University barley breeder Kevin Murphy in Pullman, Washington. Read more
Grant Awarded to Research Organic Hop Production
Kevin Murphy was awarded $410,000 from the USDA-Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative for a project entitled: “Plant breeding and agronomic research for organic hop production systems”. Co-PI’s from WSU include Stephen Jones, Lori Hoagland and Scot Hulbert. This is a multi-state project that includes researchers and farmers from Michigan, Colorado and Vermont in addition to Washington. Read more
A Perennial Search for Perfect Wheat
This WSU breeding team’s pursuit of a wheat variety that sprouts year – after - year instead of dying after producing seed was featured in the science section of the New York Times.