Agronomic performance of early segregating generations of rice under salt stress in Niger
Salinity is a major abiotic constraint that retrains rice production worldwide. The development and release of rice cultivars with improved performance in saline environments is essential to fight against this scourge. Hence this study was carried out to evaluate segregating populations of rice in Niger where salinity is a major constraint. Thus 120 F3 families derived from a diallel cross of four parents were evaluated in salt-affected farmer’s fields at two sites. The experimental design was an alpha lattice 25*5 with three replications and two sites. Data on the cycle, height, tiller number, panicle number, panicle weight, grain weight, and yield were recorded. Data were analysed using SAS 9.2 and least significant difference was used for means separation. Yield potential under salt stress varied significantly among F3 families ranging from 2.52 to 4.17 t ha−1. Correlation analysis among traits showed that yield was significantly and positively associated with height, tiller and panicle number, and panicle weight. The 20 best-performing families with a high selection index were selected for advancement for farmer’s adoption.
Keywords: rice, F3 families, Niger, performance, salinity