Insect-mediated cross-pollination in soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merrill] : I. Agronomic performance

Ortiz-Perez, E.
Cianzio, S. R.
Wiley, H.
Horner, Harry
Davis, W. H.
Palmer, R. G.
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In soybean, manual cross-pollination to produce large quantities of F1 hybrid seed for yield trials is difficult and time-consuming. Conversely, insect-mediated cross-pollination has been shown to produce large quantities of hybrid seed in soybean and could facilitate the identification of heterotic patterns. The objective of our study was: (1) evaluate F1hybrid soybean plants from single crosses for yield and agronomic traits over several environments and (2) compare hybrid performance of the single crosses to lines developed from three-way crosses and backcrosses. In 2003, F1 seed of single-crosses and their parent lines were evaluated in replicated experiments at three locations. Also in 2003, three-way crosses, and BC1F1 seed were produced. In 2004, three-way crosses, BC1F1 crosses, and their parent lines were evaluated at one location. High-parent heterosis (HPH) in single-crosses for grain yield ranged from −41.11% to +11.19%; for protein content from −4.34% to +3.53%, and for oil content from −13.22% to −0.84%. In three-way crosses, HPH for yield ranged from −25.21% to −4.50%, for protein from −2.72% to +1.92%, and for oil from −5.87% to −1.20%. For BC1F1 crosses, HPH for yield ranged from −15.65% to +41.97%, for protein from −2.57% to +1.69%, and for oil from −2.47% to +2.22%. Although positive heterosis levels were observed across all populations tested to determine the economic feasibility it is imperative that more tests of more cross-combinations be evaluated in replicated environments. Extensive research in different environments must be conducted to determine what parental combinations will produce the highest heterosis levels, and to develop criteria for selecting the parents with the best combining ability. This will be important to maximize agronomic performance that can economically justify the use of hybrids in soybean production.


This article is from Field Crops Research 101 (2007); 259, doi: 10.1016/j.fcr.2006.12.003.

Grain yield, Heterosis, Male sterility, Soybean