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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Production of An Interspecific Hybrid Between Texas and Argentine Bluegrass

Authors
item Goldman, Jason
item Sims, Phillip

Submitted to: Plant Breeding
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: February 3, 2005
Publication Date: June 1, 2005
Citation: Goldman, J.J., Sims, P.L. 2005. Production of an interspecific hybrid between Texas and Argentine bluegrass. Plant Breeding. 124:419-420

Interpretive Summary: The availability of a large collection of diverse plant material within a species (germplasm) is a common source that plant breeders use as a starting point for plant selections and variety development. In an effort to produce novel germplasm with forage or turf potential, experiments were conducted to determine if hybrids between Texas bluegrass and Argentine bluegrass could be produced. Argentine bluegrass has a bunch-type growth habit, fine upright leaves, and does not spread by rhizomes. Texas bluegrass spreads by rhizomes and has wider, longer leaves. Both species are native to arid environments and are highly palatable to herbivores. Crosses were made using pollen from an Argentine male to fertilize two Texas female plants. The two crosses produced > 200 seeds each. Hybrids segregated for traits from both parents including presence or absence of rhizomes and leaf width. Evaluations for forage and turf potential of hybrid and later generation seeds are planed in the Southern Plains of Oklahoma.

Technical Abstract: Texas and Argentine bluegrass are both dioecious Poa species with distinct morphological characteristics. Argentine bluegrass has a bunch-type growth habit, fine upright leaves, and does not produce rhizomes. Texas bluegrass spreads by rhizomes and has wider, longer leaves. In an effort to produce novel germplasm with forage or turf potential, experiments were conducted to determine if hybrid seed could be produced. Crosses were made using pollen from an Argentine male to fertilize two Texas female plants. Parents were induced to flower in the greenhouse by extending the photoperiod to 18 hours with 400 watt high pressure sodium lamps from late December to April. The two crosses produced > 200 seeds each. Hybrid seedlings segregated for traits from both parents. A sorghum derived SSR marker confirmed the hybrid nature of a group of seedlings. Seeds harvested from F1 plants using Texas or Texas X Argentine pollen lost the undesirable cottony characteristic of Texas bluegrass. Evaluations for forage and turf potential of hybrid and later generation seed are planned.

Last Modified: 10/30/2014
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