ISSN 1392-3196 / e-ISSN 2335-8947
Zemdirbyste-Agriculture, vol. 107, No. 3 (2020), p. 271–278
DOI 10.13080/z-a.2020.107.035

Breeding progress in grain filling and grain yield components of six-rowed winter barley



The objectives of this study were to quantify the grain yield breeding progress and identify the changes in numerical yield components and grain filling traits of six-rowed winter barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) cultivars under different nitrogen (N) fertilization treatments: 0 kg ha-1 N (0N, control) and 100 kg ha-1 N (100N). Field trials were conducted during two (2015–2016 and 2016–2017) growing seasons in a southern Pannonian location, Novi Sad, Serbia with fifteen six-rowed winter barley cultivars. The rate of genetic gain in grain yield was 0.055 t ha-1 yr-1 at 0N, while at 100N genetic gain was 0.061 t ha-1 yr-1, indicating that modern winter barley cultivars use the applied N fertilizer more efficiently than older cultivars. Grain yield progress was mainly associated with increased grain number per unit area, grain number per spike, grain weight and harvest index. A positive linear correlation was determined between fruiting efficiency and the year of cultivar release, while changes in spike dry weight at anthesis as influenced by the year of cultivar release were not significant. Breeding progress in grain weight was more related with grain filling and maximum grain filling rate, while grain weight association with grain filling duration was less pronounced.

Therefore, further grain yield improvement in six-rowed winter barley should be achieved by simultaneous increase in grain weight and grain number per spike, while maintaining high values of harvest index.

Key words: genetic gain, grain growth, Hordeum vulgare, nitrogen, yield components, yield improvement.

Full text: 107_3_str35.pdf