International Sugar Journal

Breeding new sugarcane varieties with enhanced ratooning ability* [Full subscriber]

Abstract      Sugarcane crop-cycle length and yield are largely determined by the ratoon crops and drive economic returns for farming operations. A number of factors affect ratooning ability (RA – the percent of the second-ratoon crop yield to the plant-cane crop yield). The transition from manual harvest to mechanized harvest in many industries has had a negative effect on RA, and most agree that the variety component is the key to improving RA. Thus, it is paramount that sugarcane breeding programs set RA as a high priority. Reported broad-sense heritabilities for RA are generally low; accordingly, some breeding programs employ family-selection…

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