Yield Potential Of Novel Semi-dwarf Grain Amaranths

 Yield Potential Of Novel Semi-dwarf Grain Amaranths Tested For Tennessee Growing Conditions

Grain Amaranths is a pseudo cereal and C4 dicotyledonous herbaceous plant with high photosynthetic efficiency. The crop thrives in adverse climatic conditions and has the potential to boost food security in a climate change scenario. The grains provide human food while the leaves serve as vegetables and forage for animals. Amaranths seeds are rich in protein, minerals (such as calcium, Iron and magnesium). Medicinally, regular consumption of Amaranths reduces blood pressure, cholesterol level and improves antioxidant status.

To evaluate the grain yield potential of grain Amaranths, three novel semi-dwarf accessions (namely, DB 2003878, DB 2003833 and DB 2010314) sourced from Iowa State University were planted at the Tennessee state university research station, Nashville, Tennessee State, USA during the summer seasons of 2015 and 2016. In both seasons, seeds were nursed on trays in the glasshouse and then transplanted to field after three weeks.

The experiment was conducted using randomized complete block design (RCBD) with four replications per accession. Data was collected on different morphological traits (growth and yield components of the plant) and subjected to analysis of variances (ANOVA) using STATISTICA software version 10.

The results revealed significant differences (P≤0.05) among the tested accessions in all the growth characters measured. Growth and yield related parameters were greater in accession DB 2003878 relative to DB 2003833 and DB 2010314. Thus, accession DB 2003878 produced higher grain yield (4712.97 kg/ha) when compared to accessions DB 2003833 (1113.08 kg/ha) and DB 2010314 (1110.06 kg/ha). Based on these findings, accession DB 2003878 which produced relatively higher grain yield, is recommended for breeding purposed aimed at increasing grain production in Amaranths.

Damba Yahaya, Ranjita Thapa and Matthew Blair, Department of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, Tennessee State University, Nashville, TN