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The breeding system of Ornithopus sativus Brot. subsp. sativus

Nutt, B.J., Harrison, R.J., McComb, J.A. and Howieson, J.G. (2021) The breeding system of Ornithopus sativus Brot. subsp. sativus. Grass and Forage Science, 76 (1). pp. 3-9.

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Genetic traits within Ornithopus sativus Brot. make it suitable for breeding as a forage legume in agriculture. The breeding system of O. sativus must be understood to stabilize valuable traits once developed. Hybridization between white‐flowered and pink‐flowered genotypes of O. sativus revealed the white flower colour to be inherited recessively to pink, while early flowering showed genetic dominance over late flowering (d = 0.5). The pink flower colour was always associated with red pigmentation on seedling hypocotyls, which provided a pragmatic aid in the selection process. Pollination of O. sativus is largely autogamous, but examination of hypocotyl colour of seedlings from white‐flowered trap plants placed among pink‐flowered plants in a sward indicated a xenogamic cross‐pollination rate of 25% is possible. This significant level of cross‐pollination revealed opportunities for breeding desirable traits within the species, while providing a warning that shifts in population structure could occur in response to selection pressure.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Environmental and Conservation Sciences
Centre for Rhizobium Studies
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
Copyright: © 2021 John Wiley & Sons Ltd
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