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Journal of Applied Genetics 47(3), 2006, pp. 207-213

Environmental stability and heritability estimates for grain yield and test weight in triticale

Ronald D. Barnett, Ann R. Blount, Paul L. Pfahler, Philip L. Bruckner, Darrell M. Wesenberg, Jerry W. Johnson

Abstract: Hexaploid triticale has many advantages over both parental species for both grain and forage production in certain environments. Additional information on environmental stability and heritability would be desirable to develop appropriate selection strategies in the production of superior widely-adapted cultivars. The grain yield of 22 diverse genotypes grown at four ecologically-distinct geographical locations [Quincy, FL, USA (approximate geographical coordinates (AGC) = 30oN 84oW, approximate elevation (AE) = 58 m), Plains, GA, USA (AGC = 32oN 84oW, AE = 76 m), Bozeman, MT USA (AGC = 45oN 111oW, AE = 1458 m), and Aberdeen, ID, USA (AGC = 42oN 112oW, AE = 1360 m)] was measured in two years with winter and spring planting dates only at Bozeman and Aberdeen. Test weight (grain weight in a given volume) was determined for two years at Bozeman and Aberdeen at both planting dates and one year at Quincy. Stability analyses indicated that significant (P < 0.01) variation in means, regression coefficients, and deviation mean squares of the genotypes were present for both characters. Realized heritability (h2) estimates were as follows: grain yield ranged from -0.02 to 0.80 with a mean of 0.57; test weight ranged from 0.63 to 1.05 with a mean of 0.93. The results indicated that substantial genetic variation is present and selection for widely-adapted cultivars would be effective for both characters especially test weight.

Key words: Hexaploid triticale, ×Triticosecale Wittmack, genotypic variation, genotype × environment interaction, genetic selection, selection response.

Correspondence: P.L. Pfahler, Agronomy Department, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-0500, USA; e-mail:

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