Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
School of Plant, Environmental and Soil Sciences
The Louisiana rice industry generates ~ 400 million dollars each year toward our state economy. Louisiana varieties are typically bred as pure lines, but hybrid (F1) varieties have the potential to increase grain yields 15% or more over conventional sources. A primary goal of the LSU AgCenter Hybrid Breeding program is to breed elite cross combinations (hybrid varieties) through development of environmentally sensitive male sterile and fertile pollinator lines. Extensive multi-location yield trials in Louisiana have demonstrated high grain and head rice yields for candidate hybrids, but improvements in maturity, lodging, and grain chalk are needed. To address these challenges, an extensive crossing and selection program was initiated between Chinese sources of male sterility and elite Louisiana varieties. Specifically, crosses were made in 2013 resulting in the creation of 129 F2 populations that were evaluated in field plots in 2014. Numerous male sterile and fertile plants were identified with improved maturity, grain type, smooth leaf, and compact plant canopy. Selected material was planted in 2015 and 2016 where each year ~ 400 environmentally sensitive male sterile plants were identified with a range of maturities and desirable plant type. During 2016 and 2017, several new hybrid experimentals, derived from new sterile lines and pollinator lines, showed high yield potential and good grain quality. We developed conventional, Clearfield, and Provisia hybrids with high yield potential. Provisia hybrids showed a yield advantage up to 40 % over the Provisia inbred check 14PVL024A. Therefore, future research should focus on additional testing in multiple environments and on seed production of these potentially new commercial hybrids.
Molina Casella, Federico, "Development and Evaluation of Environmentally-Sensitive Genetic Male Sterile Lines for Louisiana Hybrid Rice" (2017). LSU Doctoral Dissertations. 4112.