University of Hawaii

Genetic variation of husk leaves in the composite NE-EDR sh2 sweet corn population

— Ji, HC; Brewbaker, JL

Tropical field and sweet corns generally have no husk leaves, and are characterized by high husk numbers and husk extension beyond the ear tip to enhance insect control. Scully et al. (2001) reported husk leaves of the composite NE-EDRsh2 commonly averaged 22.0 cm in length and 10.5 cm in width, and that husk leaves of 1.0 to 5.0 cm are formed on about 20% of the composite NE-EDRsh2. The lengths of husk leaves vary widely, as do the sizes and numbers of tillers. In Hawaii, these variations are seasonally related to incident light, and are influenced directly by plant vigor and heterosis. The objective of this study was to obtain basic information on husk leaves variation in NE-EDR sh2 population.

The materials were self-progenies selected according to levels of husk leaves length and planted ear-to-row in 2002. A visual score rating of 1 (short husk leaves) to 9 (long husk leaves) was used. Husk leaves of self-progeny were related to scales of original husk leaves in the population (Fig. 1). Average visual score ratings of husk leaves were as follows: (A) 3.08 ± 2.33 (self-progeny with long husk leaves); (B) 2.99 ± 2.33 (self-progeny with medium husk leaves); (C) 3.01 ± 2.52 (self-progeny with short husk leaves); and (D) 1.73 ± 1.44 (self-progeny without husk leaves). Coefficients of variation (CV) were as follows: (A) 75.8%, (B) 77.9%, (C) 83.9%, (D) 83.3%.


Fig. 1. Frequency distribution of self-progeny plants to husk leaves types in NE-EDR sh2 population

A: Self-progeny with long husk leaves
B: Self-progeny with medium husk leaves
C: Self-progeny with short husk leaves
D: Self-progeny without husk leaves

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