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Improving cropping systems with new cultivars of perennial lablab

Liu, C.J. Dr; Ph: (07) 3214 2200; Fax: (07) 3214 2411;

Research organisation: CSIRO Tropical Agriculture, 306 Carmody Road, St Lucia Qld 4067

Sponsors: GRDC, Grains Research and Development Corporation


1. To develop new selection methods for drought tolerance and perennially that can be applied to breeding populations;

2. To breed a perennial cultivar which persists for three or more seasons and has similar growth vigour to the annual cultivars.


In order to achieve new selection methods for drought tolerance in the lablab breeding program, a wide range of diverse accessions were tested in pots. Plants were grown in pots for six weeks, and the pots watered to field capacity. The plants were then stressed until all the water in the pots was used up (zero moisture day or ZMD). The plants were then re-watered. One day after re-watering, the plants were scored for the amount of green leaf area retained/recovered after the stress period. Fully expanded 4th leaves are harvested prior to stress imposition, and on ZMD for measurement of relative water content, osmotic potential, and biochemical solute accumulation.


Correlations between the solute contents prior to or after stress and the ability to retain green leaf area, rapidity of growth upon stress relief, root length etc, were determined, and biochemical indicators of drought tolerance identified. Upon proving that the accumulation of a particular solute is an indicator of drought tolerance, breeding populations will be screened to identify genotypes that are likely to be more drought tolerant.

Period: starting date 1997-01; completion date 1999-12

Status: ongoing

Keywords: lablab, indicators of drought tolerance

Publications: None as yet


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