Auteur: Westermeier P., Wosnitza A., Willner E., Feuerstein U., Luesink W., Schulze S., Schum A. and Hartmann S.
Jaar van uitgifte: 2015
Water shortage is one of the most important constraints limiting yield in agricultural production. Global climate change will also limit yield of one of the most important grass species in Europe, perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.). To improve drought tolerance of perennial ryegrass by breeding new varieties, natural genetic diversity for this trait was screened in field trials. 200 accessions, comprising genebank material from all over Europe and breeding material as well as some drought-tolerant grass species for comparison, were tested under natural drought conditions. Appropriate methods for an efficient selection of droughttolerant genotypes were evaluated within the presented project. On a plot basis the visual scoring of biomass growth provided a suitable data base for selection with good correlation to drought symptoms and yield data. Broad genetic diversity for drought tolerance was observed within the material, which can be used for detailed investigation of drought-tolerance mechanisms and the development of new drought-tolerant varieties.