Developing Superior Inbreds from Exotic Germplasm of Pearl Millet1
- Glenn W. Burton2
This study was designed to compare two methods of developing pearl millet, Pennisetum amerlcanum (L.) Leeke., inbreds from exotic germplasm: selfing within an introduction (I) or selfing within F1 hybrids of the introduction crossed with an elite inbred (I × E). Elite inbreds Tilt (T) 8, T13, T18, T23, T26 (T18A and T23A), 71 introductions from India, and 250 introductions from Nigeria were used in this study. Bulking of selfed seed from single heads of 12 to 15 plants, used to plant each succeeding generation, exerted some selection for selfed seed production. No other selection was practiced. Forage yields of FI hybrids of I and I × E inbreds crossed on T18A and T23A (cytoplasmic male-sterile inbreds) were used to assess 321 I and I × E inbreds developed. Results indicate that crossing exotic germplasm with elite lines before selfing may be expected to increase inbred seed yields up to 50% and materially reduce the loss of inbreds due to poor seed set. Selection for other elite traits, not practiced here, could have given added advantage to I × E inbreds. Although the greatest difference between I and I × E hybrid forage yields (1,232 kg/ha) favored I × E inbreds, I × E inbreds generally gave no higher yielding hybrids than I inbreds.Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left.
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