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Breeding and selection of improved cultivars of trifolium subterraneum ssp. Brachycalycinum

C.T. de Koning I.D. Kahnea, P.G.H. Nichols and R.L. Tuckwell

South Australian Department of Agriculture, Rosedale SA 5350
Western Australian Deparunent of Agriculture, Baron-Hay Court, South Perth WA 6151

Well adapted cultivars of Trifolium subterraneum ssp. brachycalycinum could provide a major pasture legume in cereal-livestock farming systems of central SA and the long-term pastures of northern NSW. At present there are no well adapted early flowering ssp. brachycalycinum clover for these zones. The potential area of use is five million hectares of neutral and alkaline soils.

A national program has been instigated specifically for the breeding and selection of ssp. brachycalycinum. Currently there are only two cultivars, Clare and Rosedale. The selection and evaluation activities of the SA Department of Agriculture, NSW Agriculture and the National Subterranean Clover Improvement Program in Perth, WA, will be integrated. The overall aim of the program is to develop and release well adapted early to mid-season cultivars of ssp. brachycalycinum which are persistent in farming systems and resistant to pests and diseases.

Early flowering, hardseededness and vigour are considered to be adaptive advantages on the hard-setting neutral to slightly alkaline red brown soils of central South Australia. Much the same characteristics are required for northern NSW with the possible exception that earliness will not be as important. Consequently, the following parents were chosen for the breeding program; CPI 19451, CP 170100, CP 170056B, CPI 3498 and Rosedale. The Turkish introductions CPI 70056B, CPI 70100 and the cultivar Rosedale were chosen for their good performance in trials in SA (Beale, unpublished data). The introduction 19451 and CPI 24417 were selected to incorporate earliness and are from Israel. The Sardinian introduction 3498 was chosen for its vigour.

In 1991, seed from 393 F3 ssp. brachycalycinum lines were sent from Perth, WA, to South Australia. These lines are the result of eight crosses made in 1988:

All lines will be seed increased in rows at Turretfield Research Centre, SA, during 1991. Selection will commence in 1992 in cereal-ley regions on neutral to alkaline soils of central SA. Lines will also be sent to Tamworth, NSW, in 1992 for regional selection and evaluation in the neutral soil zone of long-term pastures in northern NSW.

Proceedings 6th Australian Society of Agronomy Conference Armidale 1992 615

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