Pollination technique for maintaining Vg Vg inbreds

It has been four years since seed of MA500 was distributed to the NSCBA group. Recently several breeders have had to ask for replacement supplies because they were unable to maintain MA500, which is homozygous Vg Vg, by hand pollination.

The technique for successful pollination of Vg Vg inbreds is different from that for normal inbreds. For best pollen production, the Vg tassels should not be pre-bagged up the day before but, rather, just shake the pollen out directly into the tassel bag at the actual time of pollination. If properly done, perhaps by one person not immediately working on other corn lines, little or no contamination results.

There has been a recent revival of interest in glumeless sweet corn now with the discovery that the high sugar content of sugary enhancer lines tends to just wash out and away from cut corn. Because the vestigial glume trait facilitates intact kernel removal, it is useful in reducing sugar loss from cut corn of the new high sugar endosperm types.

Walton C. Galinat

Please Note: Notes submitted to the Maize Genetics Cooperation Newsletter may be cited only with consent of the authors.

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