Hybrid rice work shows promise

Frances Gould, Schultz, Bruce  |  1/24/2017 8:43:25 PM

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Research associate Lazo Pavich makes a cross in a greenhouse for the hybrid program at the LSU AgCenter H. Rouse Caffey Rice Research Station. Several lines of hybrids are showing good results, including some that have the Clearfield trait.


Work by the LSU AgCenter to develop superior hybrid rice continued in 2016 with promising results.

AgCenter hybrid breeder Jim Oard said a Clearfield hybrid and a conventional hybrid were entered into the commercial advanced yield trial and the uniform regional nursery.

“They consistently had high head rice yields and good disease tolerance,” Oard said.

Milling and chalk evaluations for the line CLH161 were acceptable in 2016, he said. It will be quality tested further after a seed increase in Puerto Rico this winter and another increase at the Rice Research Station in 2017.

Four small-plot yield trials conducted last year identified four new Clearfield hybrids, two conventional hybrids and two hybrid lines with the Provisia gene. The Clearfield hybrid lines out-yielded current commercial hybrids currently in the marketplace, and they had less chalk, Oard said.

“We are paying very close attention to chalk,” he said.

A disease study of three conventional and one Clearfield breeding lines compared their sheath blight resistance to CL111 and Cocodrie. Yields were good, and disease tolerance was high, Oard said.

“This is our best result we’ve ever had. We are going to continue to breed and cross these,” he said.

Testing will be done in 2017 to see how the lines perform in a disease-free environment, and the lines will also be crossed this winter with elite, high-yielding lines.

“We’re not there 100 percent yet, but we are making good progress,” Oard said.

The new DNA marker technology used by AgCenter rice breeder Adam Famoso has been a big asset for Oard’s program. “It is helping us tremendously in developing these new hybrids, especially with grain quality markers,” Oard said.

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