Morpho-Agronomic Characterization of Newly Developed Upland Rice Germplasm (Orzya Sativa L., Orzya Glaberrima Steudel) From the Africa Rice Center and Ghana

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JUNE, 2010.
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A total of eighty-four rice accessions collected from the Africa Rice Center and Ghana were characterized and evaluated for phenotypic diversity. The phenotypic diversity among accessions was determined based on morphological and physiological traits. Thirteen quantitative and eleven qualitative characteristics were measured based on the genotypes, using the randomized complete block experimental design with three replications in a rice growing community of Nobewam (Ashanti region), Ghana. The data collections were based on the internationally acceptable standard evaluation system (ses) for rice (O.sativa, O.glaberrima). GenStat package was used to analyze quantitative parameters. A dendrogram (using the Ntsys pc) showed nitrogen regime and its relationship among 3 groups of accessions based on binary data scored on the present and absent of the morpho-agronomic characteristics. The identified accessions consisted of 49 as high and 33 low nitrogen responders belonging to different clusters. A third cluster consisted of 2 accessions suggesting their distinctiveness from the others. Correlations between quantitative traits and associated yield components were found at the least significant difference of (P < 0.05). The results revealed a strong genetic relationship between days to flowering and grain maturity character. The coefficient of variation was more than 10 % and standard deviation less than 10 % for many of the characters observed. There was wide genetic variability in the rice germplasm for days to flowering (58-83days) and grain maturity (85-105 days). Majority (60%) of the rice accessions possessed erect leaves and moderately strong sturdy culms, classified as high nitrogen responders and the rest, as low responders with droopy leaves and weak stem based on the “plant type” concept; 35% erect and 46 intermediate flag leaf angle; 67% showed awnlessness; 75% found with well exserted panicle, 55% with compact and 26% intermediate panicle types respectively. Regardless of the accessions response to Nitrogen uptake, there were significant variations in the grain yield and grain characteristics. The long grain and translucent types could be used in quality grain development. Generally, average grain yield for high nitrogen responders showed low value of 2.2 t/ha as compared to low nitrogen responders of 2.4 t/ha. In order to exploit the genetic potential and distinctiveness of the rice accessions as observed in this study, application of molecular investigations may further provide basis for these genotypes to be beneficially useful in the breeding programmes.
A Thesis Submitted To the Board of Graduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology,in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Of Master of Science in Plant Breeding (Agronomy).