Ground Cover Supplement : GC Supplement - Oilseed breeding
GROUND COVER OILSEED BREEDING SUNFLOWERS / CANOLA 6 Australian pre-breeders are continuing to discover new sources of genes to improve key traits in canola By Phil Salisbury and David Luckett AFTER WHEAT AND barley, canola is the most widely grown crop in Australia. Numerous commercial players efficiently and regularly deliver new varieties to growers. However, industry and research reviews in the mid 2000s identified the need for a germplasm- development program to focus on specific traits that would deliver significant gains to growers. The National Brassica Germplasm Improvement Program (NBGIP) is supported by the GRDC and was established as the focus of research investment in canola (Brassica napus) pre-breeding work. The NBGIP is able to focus on the difficult traits that are beyond the scope of commercial breeding programs. As new, appropriate germplasm is discovered it is offered non-exclusively to all canola breeders. In Australia, this open-access system ensures all companies have equal opportunity to use improved traits that target the priority needs of Australian canola producers. For example, in 2009, many new sources of blackleg resistance were made available to the breeding companies. Four key traits have been identified as the focus for germplasm research: n improved blackleg resistance; n drought tolerance; n reduced pod shatter; and n frost tolerance. The program is looking at traits in the germplasm from many sources including current varieties, material in the temperate field crops collection and germplasm from overseas. The NBGIP is a member of a Canadian-based international consortium of researchers run by Agriculture Canada. Blackleg disease resistance is the key breeding target for canola breeders in many areas around the world. It is widely known that the most virulent isolates of blackleg are found in Australia. The Agriculture Canada scientists are working with the Australian researchers as part of the consortium to screen populations for resistance in disease nurseries in Wagga Wagga, NSW, and Horsham, Victoria. With this phenotyping data we will be able to identify and map some of the blackleg resistance genes. This will lead to the development of molecular markers that will aid the breeding programs and complement existing molecular marker work. Additional NBGIP sources of new germplasm for traits such as pod shatter and drought tolerance Global search for Two months after planting, trials were rated for any symptoms that would prevent harvesting, for example stem necrosis leading to lodging, and heads severely reduced in size and/or deformed. The incidence of infection ranged from about five per cent of the crop to more than 80 per cent in different varieties (Figure 1). Data in Figure 1 is sorted from lowest to highest infection rates based on the results from the 2009 trial located at Kenlogan, Queensland. This site had higher levels of disease in both 2008 and 2009 when compared to results from Langton Cottage farm, south of Clermont. There were differences in soil moisture between the sites, which may cause variation in the response of the hybrids to infection and the severity of infection. This rating is only for tolerance to TSV and does not consider yield potential, performance under local conditions or oil levels -- all factors that also influence variety choice. Although choice of hybrid could offer substantial protection against severe losses from TSV, the use of cultural controls can also help reduce infection. Avoiding plantings downwind of large areas of TSV- infected parthenium is one effective way to avoid very high disease incidence near the crop edge. Preliminary results from research by the Queensland Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (DEEDI) indicate that a barrier crop of forage sorghum may also help to reduce the severe edge effect. For example, in one situation, a barrier of eight metres of sorghum, planted at the same time as sunflowers, appeared to reduce TSV disease incidence to 33 per cent, compared to about 75 per cent without a barrier. The effect of such a barrier may be enhanced further if it can be planted some time before the sunflower crop. □ GRDC Research Code DAQ00130 with collaborative funding from the Cotton Research and Development Corporation More information: Murray Sharman, plant pathologist, DEEDI, 07 3896 9374, firstname.lastname@example.org 0 7752.6301 T83544 Hysun 38 Ausigold 62 Advantage Award Ausigold 4 7802.6301 7714.6822 T40318 HC001GN Sunoleic 06 Hyoleic 41 Sunbird 7 Hysun 39 HP002GN GHX570 Ausigold 52 Ausigold 7 Ausigold 61 Jade Emperor % Severe infection 100 80 60 40 20 Kenlogan 2008 Kenlogan 2009 Langton Cottage 2009 Hybrid Figure 1 Three field trials assessing incidence of severe TSV at two months post-planting in different sunflower hybrids. Trials were conducted equally under general conditions for all hybrids SUNFLOWER HYBRIDS DIFFER IN THEIR TOLERANCE TO TSV.
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