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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Griffin, Georgia » Plant Genetic Resources Conservation Unit » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #318200

Research Project: Conservation, Characterization, and Evaluation of Plant Genetic Resources and Associated Information

Location: Plant Genetic Resources Conservation Unit

Title: The USDA Pearl Millet Germplasm Collection

Author
item Harrison, Melanie
item Spinks, Merrelyn

Submitted to: ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/16/2015
Publication Date: 11/18/2015
Citation: Harrison, M.L., Spinks, M. 2015. The USDA Pearl Millet Germplasm Collection.[abstract]. ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting Abstracts. Paper No. 901.

Interpretive Summary: The USDA National Plant Germplasm System pearl millet collection is maintained at the Plant Genetic Resources Conservation Unit located in Griffin, Ga. The seed collection contains 1297 unique samples collected from 31 different countries. The majority of the seed samples were collected or donated from Zimbabwe, India, Nigeria, and Burkina Faso. Over 98% of the samples are available for distribution and 100% of the material is backed up at a second location. In order to maintain live seed in sufficient quantities, seed increases are performed as needed at the USDA facility in St. Croix, Virgin Islands. Information on each seed sample is available online at the USDA, Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN) website including information on basic morphology (e.g. leaf length, spike length), plant growth (e.g. plant uniformity, forage potential), seed maturity, seed weight, and image data. Although the majority of the seed samples have been in storage for over 10 years, the germination rates have remained high with rates being >80% for most of the seed samples. The purpose of the collection is to provide a diverse set of seed for those researching this crop.

Technical Abstract: The USDA National Plant Germplasm System pearl millet collection is maintained at the Plant Genetic Resources Conservation Unit located in Griffin, Ga. The germplasm collection contains 1297 unique accessions collected from 31 different countries. The majority of the accessions were collected or donated from Zimbabwe, India, Nigeria, and Burkina Faso. Over 98% of the accessions are available and 100% of the germplasm is backed up at a second location. Material is regenerated at the USDA facility in St. Croix, Virgin Islands. There are 24 descriptors available online at the USDA, Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN) website including descriptors on basic morphology (e.g. leaf length, spike length), plant growth (e.g. plant uniformity, forage potential), seed maturity, seed weight, and image data. Although the majority of the germplasm has been in storage for over 10 years, the viability has remained high with rates being >80% for most of seed inventories. Samples of 100 seed per accession are distributed free of charge to those requesting germplasm for research and educational purposes.