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Root Foraging Capacity in Bambara Groundnut (Vigna Subterranea (L.) Verdc.) Core Parental Lines Depends on the Root System Architecture during the Pre-Flowering Stage

1
Future Food Beacon Malaysia, School of Biosciences, University of Nottingham Malaysia, Jalan Broga, Semenyih 43500, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia
2
Crops For the Future, Jalan Broga, Semenyih 43500, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia
3
School of Biosciences, University of Nottingham, Sutton Bonington Campus, Loughborough, Leicester LE12 5RD, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Plants 2020, 9(5), 645; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9050645
Received: 16 February 2020 / Revised: 11 March 2020 / Accepted: 12 March 2020 / Published: 19 May 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Plant–Soil Interactions)
Characterizing the morphological variability in root system architecture (RSA) during the sensitive pre-flowering growth stage is important for crop performance. To assess this variation, eight bambara groundnut single genotypes derived from landraces of contrasting geographic origin were selected for root system architecture and rooting distribution studies. Plants were grown in a polyvinyl chloride (PVC) column system under controlled water and nutrient availability in a rainout shelter. Days to 50% plant emergence was characterized during the first two weeks after sowing, while taproot length (TRL), root length (RL), root length density (RLD), branching number (BN), branching density (BD) and intensity (BI), surface area (SA), root volume (RV), root diameter (RDia), root dry weight (RDW), shoot dry weight (SDW), and shoot height (SH) were determined at the end of the experiment, i.e., 35 days after emergence. Genotypes S19-3 and DipC1 sourced from drier regions of sub-Saharan Africa generally had longer taproots and greater root length distribution in deeper (60 to 90 cm) soil depths. In contrast, bambara groundnut genotypes from wetter regions (i.e., Gresik, Lunt, and IITA-686) in Southeast Asia and West Africa exhibited relatively shallow and highly branched root growth closer to the soil surface. Genotypes at the pre-flowering growth stage showed differential root foraging patterns and branching habits with two extremes, i.e., deep-cheap rooting in the genotypes sourced from dry regions and a shallow-costly rooting system in genotypes adapted to higher rainfall areas with shallow soils. We propose specific bambara groundnut genotype as donors in root trait driven breeding programs to improve water capture and use efficiency. View Full-Text
Keywords: bambara groundnut; branching; deep rooting; drought adaptation; root traits bambara groundnut; branching; deep rooting; drought adaptation; root traits
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MDPI and ACS Style

Mateva, K.I.; Chai, H.H.; Mayes, S.; Massawe, F. Root Foraging Capacity in Bambara Groundnut (Vigna Subterranea (L.) Verdc.) Core Parental Lines Depends on the Root System Architecture during the Pre-Flowering Stage. Plants 2020, 9, 645. https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9050645

AMA Style

Mateva KI, Chai HH, Mayes S, Massawe F. Root Foraging Capacity in Bambara Groundnut (Vigna Subterranea (L.) Verdc.) Core Parental Lines Depends on the Root System Architecture during the Pre-Flowering Stage. Plants. 2020; 9(5):645. https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9050645

Chicago/Turabian Style

Mateva, Kumbirai I., Hui H. Chai, Sean Mayes, and Festo Massawe. 2020. "Root Foraging Capacity in Bambara Groundnut (Vigna Subterranea (L.) Verdc.) Core Parental Lines Depends on the Root System Architecture during the Pre-Flowering Stage" Plants 9, no. 5: 645. https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9050645

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