Genotypic variation in the ability of wheat roots to penetrate wax layers

Whalley, W. R. and Dodd, I. C. and Watts, C. W. and Webster, C. P. and Phillips, A. L. and Andralojc, J. and White, R. P. and Davies, W. J. and Parry, M. A. J. (2013) Genotypic variation in the ability of wheat roots to penetrate wax layers. Plant and Soil, 364 (1-2). pp. 171-179. ISSN 0032-079X

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The role of the root system in mediating crop yields has recently been emphasised, resulting in several laboratory approaches for phenotyping root traits. We aimed to determine the existence of, and reasons for, genotypic variation in wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) root penetration of strong wax layers. Three contrasting groups (UK elite lines, CIMMYT lines and near-isogenic lines of cv Mercia containing dwarfing and semi-dwarfing Rht alleles) comprising 18 different genotypes with contrasting phenologies were studied. We determined the ability of roots of these genotypes to penetrate strong wax layers and the angular spread of the root systems. There were no intrinsic differences in root system ability to penetrate strong wax layers (consistent with the similar root diameter of all lines) since greater root penetration was simply related to more root axes. Recording root penetration of concentric zones of the wax layer demonstrated that cv. Battalion had a root system with a smaller angular spread than cv. Robigus, which had the root system with the greatest angular spread. There was limited genotypic variability in root penetration of strong layers within the wheat cultivars studied. A key challenge will be to determine the physiological and agronomic significance of the variation in root angular spread.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Plant and Soil
Uncontrolled Keywords:
?? seedlingsroot distributionabiotic stresseslaboratory root screensyieldsoil strengthadaptationfieldricearchitectural traitsmechanical impedancewheat rootssoil strengthcropswheatdroughtplant sciencesoil science ??
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Deposited On:
17 Jul 2013 15:00
Last Modified:
15 Jul 2024 14:06