Pollen Storage Effects on Early Seedling Growth in Maize
Maize (Zea mays L.) has been subjected to many generations of deliberate sporophytic selection followed, in each generation, by pollination with excess quantities of fresh pollen. Under this pollination procedure, extreme pollen genotype selection and variance reduction for genetic factors affecting pollen competitive ability could occur. Changes in this pollination scheme may amplify pollen transmission differences in these heterogeneous pollen populations previously exposed to pollen genotype selection. Extended pollen storage at 2°C prior to pollination has produced differential pollen transmission of alleles at various qualitative loci in maize (Pfahler 1974b). This storage effect has not been examined for quantitative characters associated with vigor and heterosis. Early seedling growth has been positively correlated with heterozygosity level and vigor expressed later in the life cycle (Whaley 1952).
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