Use of carbon isotope discrimination to indirectly select for improved seed yield in lentil
van Kessel, C.
Carbon isotope discrimination (CID) has been proposed as a secondary trait to indirectly select for improved water use efficiency and seed yield. To determine the effectiveness of CID to indirectly select for seed yield, ten diverse lentil (Lens culinaris Medikus) cultivars were grown at four locations in Saskatchewan in 1992 and 1993. Variability for CID was present among these lentil cultivars and no crossover interactions were observed. The phenotypic correlation between seed yield and CID of leaves at early flowering (CIDLF) was 0.82** (df=8). However, this highly significant relationship resulted from the extreme early maturity of PI 244026. Previous research has shown that CID values decrease with maturity and PI 244026 flowers about 15 days earlier than the other lentil lines. When PI 244026 lentil was removed, variability in CID was greatly reduced and the correlation between CIDLF and seed yield approached zero (r = 0.22, df=7). These results suggest that CIDLF cannot be used to indirectly select for seed yield in lentil.
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