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Crop Science Abstract -

Flowering and Fertility of Alfalfa as Influenced by Inbreeding and Stage of Plant Growth1


This article in CS

  1. Vol. 8 No. 5, p. 522-524
    Received: Sept 14, 1967

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  1. M. K. Miller and
  2. M. H. Schonhorst2



Two clones of alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.) and their F1, S1, and S2 progenies were studied in the greenhouse at Tucson, Arizona. Numbers of seeds and pods produced and self-fertility, measured as seed-set percentage per self-pollinated flower, generally decreased with inbreeding. The F1 plants sampled were more self-fertile than either parent clone. No relationship was found between generations of inbreeding and number of racemes or flowers produced. Self-fertility of all plants was highest during the first weeks of flowering; however, considerable variation occurred among plants in later weeks. The ratio of cross-fertility (seed-set percentage per cross-pollinated flower) to self-fertility of the parent clones was 4.1:1.0.

Numbers of seeds and pods produced, and self-fertillty were highly correlated. Numbers of racemes and flowers produced were also highly correlated, but they were not correlated with self-fertility, number of pods, or number of seeds produced.

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