Effects of Pollination Method on Strain Cross Yield in Lucerne

Steven E Smith, D. J. Fairbanks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Because of difficulties in pollination, control, F1 hybrids have not been widely explioted in lucerne’ (Medicago sativa L.). Strain crossing (uncontrolled hybridization between two or more self‐fertile populations with seed of the populations combined to product a “strain cross” population) represents a potentially valuable alternative procedure for exploiting heterosis in this species. Strain crosses in lucerne are typically produced using insect pollination in the field. Using hand pollination under glasshouse houses could increase the number of strain crosses available for tests of combining ability. The objective of this study was to determine whether forage yield of strain crosses produced using hand pollination were sufficiently similar to that of insect‐produced populations to allow the use of the former in lucerne breeding. Forage yields of eight pairs of hand‐ and insect‐produced strain crosses did not differ significantly in 15 of 16 pairwise comparisons and were positively correlated (rs= 0.90) for 20 harvests at two locations. Yield amp of band produced strain crosses could be used, with reasonable accuracy to accuracy the eventual performance of strain crosses produced between the same populations using insect pollination.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)79-82
Number of pages4
JournalPlant Breeding
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1989


  • Medicago sativa
  • pollination
  • seed production
  • strain crosses

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Genetics
  • Plant Science


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