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Does maintaining green leaf area in sorghum improve yield under drought? II. Dry matter production and yield

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Borrell, A. K., Hammer, G. L. and Henzell, R. G. (2000) Does maintaining green leaf area in sorghum improve yield under drought? II. Dry matter production and yield. Crop Science, 40 (4). pp. 1037-1048. ISSN 0011183X (ISSN)


Article Link: https://doi.org/10.2135/cropsci2000.4041037x


Retention of green leaf area at maturity (GLAM), known as stay-green, is used as an indicator of postanthesis drought resistance in sorghum [Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench] breeding programs in the USA and Australia. The critical issue is whether maintaining green leaves under postanthesis drought increases grain yield in stay-green compared with senescent hybrids. Field studies were undertaken in northeastern Australia on a cracking and self-mulching gray clay. Nine closely related hybrids varying in rate of leaf senescence were grown under two water-limiting regimes, post-flowering water deficit and terminal (pre- and postflowering) water deficit, and a fully irrigated control. Under terminal water deficit, grain yield was correlated positively with GLAM (r = 0.75**) and negatively with rate of leaf senescence (r = -0.74**). Grain yield also increased by ≃0.35 Mg ha-1 for every day that onset of leaf senescence was delayed beyond 76 DAE in the water-limited treatments. Stay-green hybrids produced 47% more postanthesis biomass than their senescent counterparts (920 vs. 624 g m-2) under the terminal water deficit regime. No differences in grain yield were found among eight of the nine hybrids under fully irrigated conditions, suggesting that the stay-green trait did not constrain yield in the well-watered control. The results indicate that sorghum hybrids possessing the stay-green trait have a significant yield advantage under postanthesis drought compared with hybrids not possessing this trait.

Item Type:Article
Corporate Creators:Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, Queensland
Business groups:Crop and Food Science
Keywords:Australia biomass drought resistance drought stress dry matter genetic trait grain yield green leaf area hybrid plant breeding senescence United States Sorghum bicolor
Subjects:Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Agricultural meteorology. Crops and climate
Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Methods and systems of culture. Cropping systems
Plant culture > Field crops > Sorghum
Live Archive:20 Jun 2024 01:59
Last Modified:20 Jun 2024 01:59

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