Submitted to: Crop Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/9/2003
Publication Date: 1/1/2004
Citation: Seiler, G.J., Campbell, L.G. 2004. Genetic variability for mineral element concentrations of wild jerusalem artichoke forage. Crop Science. 44:289-292.
Interpretive Summary: Jerusalem artichoke, a wild perennial sunflower native to North America, is often present in pastures, crops, and rangelands, but its overall forage quality is not well understood. Jerusalem artichoke was used as forage Europe several year ago. Knowing the elemental composition and variability of the concentrations in forage of the various wild populations offer breeders the opportunity to use these populations for improving the forage quality of Jerusalem artichoke cultivars. The objectives of this study were to determine the genotypic variability of nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium and the calcium to phosphorus ratio in forage of nine wild Jerusalem artichoke populations at flowering over a 2-year period, determine if selection among and within populations is feasible, and to examine relationships among the elements. The adequacy of Jerusalem artichoke forage at flowering for maintenance of a ruminant animal was classified as follows: N, Ca, Mg, K as adequate, P inadequate, and Ca/P ratio as excessive. Wild populations of Jerusalem artichoke contained sufficient genetic variability for the major nutritional elements. The high variability within populations will allow selection for specific elements, except phosphors. The genetic variability observed in the wild populations will provide breeders the opportunity to develop strategies for improving the feed-quality of Jerusalem artichoke cultivars using the closely related wild species.
Technical Abstract: One of the potential uses of Jerusalem artichoke (Helianthus tuberosus L.) is as a forage crop. Information on inherent differences in forage nutritional quality is essential if the quality of the forage is to be improved through breeding. The objectives of this study were to determine the genotypic variability of N, P, Ca, Mg, K and Ca/P ratio in the forage of nine wild Jerusalem artichoke populations at flowering over a 2-year period, to determine if selection among and within populations is feasible, and to examine relationships among the elements. The adequacy of Jerusalem artichoke forage at flowering for maintenance of a ruminant animal was classified as follows: N, Ca, Mg, K as adequate, P inadequate, and Ca/P ratio as excessive. There were genotypic differences among the nine populations for N, K, P, Ca, Mg, and the Ca to P ratio for both years and averaged across years. The magnitude of the genotypic variance components indicated that a substantial proportion of the total variation for these elements was due to genotype, indicating the possibility of improvement through hybridization and selection. Within-population variation for N, Ca, and K was high, indicating potential for improvement with further selection within populations. Population variances for P and Mg were low, suggesting it will be difficult to improve these with selection. Unfortunately, P is inadequate in the forage to begin with, and our data indicated that selecting within populations for high P may not be very successful.