Morphological Characteristics of Tall and Dwarf Pearl Millet Isolines
- K. N. Rai and
- W. W. Hanna
Among all the dwarfing genes reported in pearl millet [Pennisetum glaucum (L.) R. Br.], the d2 gene has been most extensively utilized in breeding programs. Its effect on morphological characters, however, has not been adequately studied in the past due to lack of isogenic lines. The objective of this research was to study the effect of the d2 dwarfing gene on several morphological characters by comparing six pair of tall and dwarf near-isogenic lines (isolines) developed in genetic backgrounds of two diverse composites. Tests conducted on plant and seed characteristics at the ICRISAT Center, Patancheru, India and Tifton, GA, showed that dwarf isolines were shorter but had longer peduncles, longer panicles, narrower panicles, thicker culms, wider leaves, and smaller seeds than their tall counterparts. The differences between tall and dwarf isolines for number of total and effective tillers plant −1, leaf sheath length, and time to 50% anthesis were either nonsignificant or inconsistent across locations. Plant height was the only characteristic studied that was not influenced by genetic background. Genetic variation among isolines for effects of the d2 gene on numerous characters indicate the gene can be used to advantage by incorporating it into diverse germplasm.
Copyright © 1990.