Genetic parameters, genetic gain and correlated responses in growth, fibre dimensions and wood density in a Scots pine breeding population
Annals of Forest Science, 2012 69(7):783-794
The multi-trait analyses of a progeny trial presented here will provide advice for including wood and fibre traits in the current Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) breeding programs.
Fibre length and fibre width were analysed together with area-weighted earlywood and latewood densities and growth traits in a Scots pine full-sib progeny trial to estimate heritabilities, genetic correlations and genetic gain.
Wood density was analysed by X-ray diffraction of increment cores and fibre dimensions with a Kajaani FiberLab analyser. Genetic parameters were estimated using the ASReml statistical software.
Heritabilities for fibre width, fibre length, height growth and earlywood, latewood and whole-ring density were 0.22 to 0.49. Fibre width exhibited positive genetic correlation with height growth (r A = 0.24) and wood density (r A = 0.096 to 0.32). Fibre length exhibited negative correlations with height and stem diameter (r A = −0.27 and r A = −0.59, respectively) but positive with wood densities (r A = 0.26 to 0.37). Growth traits and wood densities were negatively genetically correlated.
Selecting the trees in the top 10 % for height will give minor increase in fibre width (+1 %), and decrease in relative fibre length (−0.84 %) and area-weighted earlywood, latewood and whole-ring densities (−1 % to 1.9 %) indicating limited scope for combining improvements in wood and fibre traits with increased growth through breeding.
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