Greenhouse Evaluation of Tall Fescue Genotypes for Rhizome Production
- J. P. De Battista and
- J. H. Bouton
Increasing rhizome production in tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea Schreb.) is a desirable breeding goal because rhizomes promote persistence under conditions of stress. Evaluating rhizome production in the field is time-consuming and difficult. This study was conducted to assess the possibility of using greenhouse evaluation to select endophyte-free tall fescue genotypes for rhizome production. The effects of pot size and plant age on rhizome expression of tall fescue seedlings were studied. Means and ranks of 73 genotypes evaluated in the greenhouse and field were compared. Numbers of rhizomes and tillers were affected by pot size ✕ plant age interaction. Significant (P < 0.01) genotypes ✕ location (greenhouse or field) interaction and low, nonsignificant (P > 0.05) rank correlation coefficients among genotypes were obtained. At least 7 mo of growth were required before rhizome expression occurred in tall fescue seedlings under greenhouse conditions. Greenhouse evaluation might be useful for screening tall fescue genotypes for tiller production, but under the conditions of this study it does not appear to be useful in screening for rhizome production.
Copyright © 1990.