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Cereal Research Communications
Authors: Josip Kovacevic, Alojzije Lalic, Vlado Kovacevic and Djuro Banaj

Winter barley were grown under field conditions during the 2004 growing season and residual influences of liming with carbocalk (waste of sugar factory) and phosphorus fertilization with MAP (monoammonium phosphate) were tested. By using the lowest lime rate (15 t ha −1 ) barley yield was increased by 30%. Overliming (90 t ha −1 ) resulted by significant yield decreases in comparison with application 15 and 30 t of lime. Using of 45 and more lime per hectare protein contents was significantly increased. In general, liming considerably influenced on grain composition of barley. For example, by application of the lowest lime rate, grain P, K, Ca, Mg, Fe, Cu, Mo and Na significantly increased in comparison with the control. Differences of grain composition among lime treatments were mainly non-significant. Ameliorative P fertilization significantly increased grain yields of barley up to 25% in comparison with the control. In general, grain composition differences among applied treatments were mainly non-significant because significant differences only for P and Mn (increasing trend due to P application) as well as for Zn and Mo (decreasing trend) were found.

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Cereal Research Communications
Authors: S. Sareen, R. Munjal, N. Singh, B. Singh, R. Verma, B. Meena, J. Shoran, A. Sarial and S. Singh

Terminal heat, which is referred as increase in temperature during grain filling, is one of the important stress factors for wheat production. Current estimates indicate that wheat crop grown on around 13.5mha in India is affected by heat stress. In order to meet the challenges of high temperature ahead of global warming, concerted efforts are needed to evaluate germplasm for heat tolerance and identify and develop genotypes suitable for such stressed environments. The advanced wheat genotypes developed for stress and normal environments by different research centers were evaluated across 7 locations representing varied agroclimatic zones during 2007–08 and 2008–09 to study their adaptability for heat stress and non-stress environments. The additive main effects and multiplicative interaction analysis for G × E interactions revealed differences amongst locations to phenology and grain yield. Genotype RAJ 4083 developed for cultivation under late sown conditions in peninsular zone was also found adaptable to timely sown conditions. Similarly, HD 2733 a cultivar of NEPZ timely sown conditions and PBW 574 an advanced breeding line of NWPZ late sown conditions was found adapted to Peninsular zone. The cultivar RAJ 3765 showed specific adaptability to Pantnagar in NWPZ. Genotype NW 3069 developed for NEPZ timely sown conditions have shown adaptability to number of locations; timely sown conditions at Karnal and Hisar in NWPZ and Niphad in PZ. Likewise, WH 1022 developed for NEPZ late sown conditions exhibited specific adaptability to all timely sown locations in NWPZ.

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A 2-year conservation agriculture experiment was conducted in Southern Italy on durum wheat continuous cropping. Aim of the research was to assess the durum wheat productivity and grain quality in reduced soil tillage systems, according to conservation agriculture principles. The interactions among experimental treatments and climate revealed a close relationship among grain yield, grain quality and wheat growth conditions. Specifically, conventional tillage (CT, plowing and 2 disc harrowing) showed in the 2-year period higher grain production than reduced tillage treatments, minimum (MT, 1 disc harrowing) and No tillage (NT), especially for good crop water availability (3.29 t ha–1 of grain yield in CT, 2.67 in MT and 2.54 in NT). The amount of rainfall (above the average in both years) and its distribution in the growing seasons (more regular in the first year) strongly influenced wheat-grain quality indices (11.97% of protein content in the first year and 9.82% in the second one). Also, the wheat quality resulted more sensitive to the “Year × Tillage” interaction, with differences among tillages more evident in the second year and favourable to NT and MT. Spectral vegetation indexes (NDVI and TVI) measurements at flowering, have been shown to be useful to support farmers in N-late application for improving grain wheat quality. From this experiment carried out during the conversion period and in wet years, wheat managed with CT resulted in higher grain yield and quality, while only test weight showed a significant “Year × Tillage” interaction. Further indications emerged on the need to supply additional (10–20%) seed amount at sowing and crop nitrogen fertilizer in the first transition years in reduced tillage systems compared to conventional ones.

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Drought and soil acidity are two major abiotic stress factors limiting maize production worldwide, generating imbalances in the manganese (Mn) and zinc (Zn) status in plants. This study was conducted to determine the effects of drought stress on the Mn and Zn status in maize genotypes grown on acid and non-acid soils and how the Mn and Zn status affects the changes in grain yield caused by drought stress and soil acidity. Seventeen genotypes were grown at two locations differing in soil acidity in Eastern Croatia in 2003 and 2004. Positive values of an aridity index indicated drought stress in 2003. The genotypes had much higher Mn and Zn concentrations on acid soil than on nonacid soil: more than twice as high in both seasons for Zn and about 6 and 9 times higher in normal and in dry seasons, respectively, for Mn. This demonstrates that drought combined with soil acidity led to the excessive accumulation of Mn in maize plants. However, variation was observed between the maize genotypes for the Mn accumulation on soils differing in acidity when drought occurred. Some genotypes accumulated Mn on acid soil irrespective of drought. The Mn and Zn status had no discernible effect on the changes in grain yield caused by drought stress and/or soil acidity.

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Cereal Research Communications
Authors: Alojzije Lalic, Josip Kovacevic, Georg Drezner, Dario Novoselovic, Darko Babic, Kresimir Dvojkovic and Gordana Simic

The objective of research was to determine grain yield, hectoliter weight, grain proteins and starch content of 17 winter barley cultivars from trials at four locations (Tovarnik, Nova Gradiska, Pozega and Osijek) and during three years (2002 to 2005). All traits were significantly influenced by year (Y), location (L) and genotype (G) while sowing rate (300 and 450 seeds per m 2 ) and genotype*sowing rate (G*D) did not affect trait means (P>0,05). Interactions as year* sowing rate (Y*D), location*sowing rate (L*D) and year*location*sowing rate caused significant influence to grain yield and proteins and starch content in grains. Regression coefficient “bi”, ecovalence “W i ” and variance of deviations from regressions “S 2 d i ” pointed out best performance of cultivars Barun, Bingo and Gvozd in more intensive growing conditions due to its top yielding, lowest proteins and rich starch content of grains. Opposite to this, best yield and quality performance of cultivars at low input production could be expected from cultivars Plaisant, Vanessa, Favorit, Lord and Heraklo.

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Cereal Research Communications
Authors: Alojzije Lalic, Josip Kovacevic, Georg Drezner, Dario Novoselovic, Darko Babic, Kresimir Dvojkovic and Gordana Simic

The objective of research was to determine grain yield, hectoliter weight, grain proteins and starch content of 17 winter barley cultivars from trials at four locations (Tovarnik, Nova Gradiska, Pozega and Osijek) and during three years (2002 to 2005). All traits were significantly influenced by year (Y), location (L) and genotype (G) while sowing rate (300 and 450 seeds per m 2 ) and genotype*sowing rate (G*D) did not affect trait means (P>0,05). Interactions as year* sowing rate (Y*D), location*sowing rate (L*D) and year*location*sowing rate caused significant influence to grain yield and proteins and starch content in grains. Regression coefficient “bi”, ecovalence “W i ” and variance of deviations from regressions “S 2 d i ” pointed out best performance of cultivars Barun, Bingo and Gvozd in more intensive growing conditions due to its top yielding, lowest proteins and rich starch content of grains. Opposite to this, best yield and quality performance of cultivars at low input production could be expected from cultivars Plaisant, Vanessa, Favorit, Lord and Heraklo.

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Cereal Research Communications
Authors: B.L. Béres, N.Z. Lupwayi, F.J. Larney, B. Ellert, E.G. Smith, T.K. Turkington, D. Pageau, K. Semagn and Z. Wang

Research indicates that not all crops respond similarly to cropping diversity and the response of triticale (× Triticosecale ssp.) has not been documented. We investigated the effects of rotational diversity on cereals in cropping sequences with canola (Brassica napus L.), field pea (Pisum sativum L.), or an intercrop (triticale:field pea). Six crop rotations were established consisting of two, 2-yr low diversity rotations (LDR) (continuous triticale (T-T_LDR) and triticale-wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) (T-W_LDR)); three, 2-yr moderate diversity rotations (MDR) (triticale-field pea (T-P_MDR), triticale-canola (T-C_MDR), and a triticale: field pea intercrop (T- in P_MDR)); and one, 3-yr high diversity rotation (HDR) (canola-triticale-field pea (C-T-P_HDR)). The study was established in Lethbridge, Alberta (irrigated and rainfed); Swift Current (rainfed) and Canora (rainfed), Saskatchewan, Canada; and carried out from 2008 to 2014. Triticale grain yield for the 3-yr HDR was superior over the LDR rotations and the MDR triticale-field pea system; however, results were similar for triticale-canola, and removal of canola from the system caused a yield drag in triticale. Triticale biomass was superior for the 3-yr HDR. Moreover, along with improved triticale grain yield, the 3-yr HDR provided greater yield stability across environments. High rotational diversity (C-T-P_HDR) resulted in the highest soil microbial community and soil carbon concentration, whereas continuous triticale provided the lowest. Net economic returns were also superior for C-T-P_HDR ($670 ha–1) and the lowest for T-W_LDR ($458 ha–1). Overall, triticale responded positively to increased rotational diversity and displayed greater stability with the inclusion of field pea, leading to improved profitability and sustainability of the system.

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Field experiments were conducted at the Central Farm of the Agricultural College and Research Institute, Madurai, India during the rabi (October-January) seasons of 1999-2000 and 2000-2001 in a split plot design with three replications. The soil of the experiments was sandy clay loam with a neutral reaction. The main plot consisted of six irrigation schedules with mid-season drainage, while four N splits were taken as sub- plots. The experimental results revealed that irrigation to a depth of 5 cm one day after the disappearance of ponded water and mid-season drainage, along with N applied in four splits, with 16.7% at 10 days after transplanting, 33.3% at active tillering, 33.3% at panicle initiation and 16.7% at the heading stage, produced significantly higher growth, yield attributes, grain and straw yields in hybrid rice. A combination of the above treatments led to maximum grain yields of 7533 and 8078 kg ha-1 (45.53 and 45.86% in excess of the control) in 1999-2000 and 2000-2001, respectively.

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In any breeding program, it is necessary to screen and identify phenotypically stable genotypes that could perform uniformly under different environmental conditions. Such a breeding effort requires basic information of genotype × environment (G × E) interaction. Twenty genotypes including hybrids and aromatic rice were evaluated in 8 environments in two production systems viz; System of Rice Intensification (SRI) and normal cultivation environments during kharif season (May–October) 2009. The experiment was laid down in RBD with two replications in a plot of 1 m2. Pooled analysis for G × E interaction and stability revealed that the genotypes and environments were highly significant (p < 0.01) for all twelve characters studied. The G × E interaction was significant for six traits including all key components of SRI except tillers no. Both linear and non-linear components contributed towards G × E interaction. Stability parameters identified genotypes PR-114 and HKR-47 as stable for grain yield per plant and HKR-127, HKR-120, CSR-30, Pusa-1121 and IR-64 for test grain weight. Genotypes identified suitable for favourable environments were HKR-126, HSD-1, PAU-201and Govind while for unfavourable environment were HSD-1, HKRH-1094, HKR-48 and PAU-201 for different traits. IR 64 and Pusa 1121 registered 24.31 and 12.54% increase in yield in SRI over normal production system. These genotypes need to be tested in macro environments over space and time and could be utilized for direct cultivation as well as for improvements of other cultivars.

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Mengistu, N., Baenziger, P.S., Eskridge, K.M., Dweikat, I., Wegulo, S.N., Gill, K.S., Mujeeb-Kazi, A. 2012. Validation of QTL for grain yield-related traits on wheat chromosome 3A using recombinant inbred chromosome lines. Crop Sci. 52 : 1622

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