Variation in Australian durum wheat germplasm for productivity traits under irrigated and rainfed conditions: Genotype performance for agronomic traits and benchmarking
Copyright © The Author(s), 2020. Published by Cambridge University Press. A set of durum wheat genotypes from New South Wales (NSW, Durum Breeding Australia (DBA) Northern Program), South Australia (SA, DBA Southern Program and Australian Grain Technology), ICARDA and CIMMYT (International Centre for Research in Dryland Agriculture and International Centre for Maize and Wheat Improvement) was evaluated over 3 years (2012-2014) in field trials containing rainfed and watered blocks in Narrabri, NSW, Australia. Data on yield and other agronomic traits were analysed using a multi-environment trial approach that accommodated the factorial treatment structure (genotype by irrigation regime) within individual trials. Considerable variation was observed in the durum germplasm for productivity and grain quality traits. DBA Bindaroi (NSW) and 101042 (ICARDA) were the top yielders in watered and rainfed blocks, respectively. The yield was positively and strongly related to both harvest index and grains/m2, but grains/m2 was negatively related to thousand grain weight (TGW) and positively related to screenings. TGW and screenings were strongly negatively related and TGW and grains/m2 showed a weak positive relationship. Promising genotypes were identified, with superior traits to both the bread wheat check, EGA Gregory and the durum check, Caparoi. Overall, lines from SA and ICARDA were superior for yield but those from NSW were superior for quality parameters including TGW and screenings. These results suggested the possibility of developing high yielding high-quality durum varieties by crossing NSW lines with SA, CIMMYT and ICARDA lines through simultaneous selection for yield, TGW and low screenings. The results also suggested that productivity in rainfed conditions was positively related to productivity under watering, but further research is required to establish this.