Study lentil germplasm under the conditions of the Shirak zone of Armenia - Tbilisi (Georgia) CIMMYT : 2004 - p. 382-383 - Printed
Lentil is not widely spread in Armenia, as far as the varieties available in the republic (Talinski 6 and Haykakan 88) are undersized, semi-prostrated with delayed maturity. Pods of the lower layer crack with the resultant seed shattering, while new flowers are produced on the top of the plant. Such biological traits make machine harvesting difficult, restricting in turn the expansion of the varieties. To increase sowing areas and raise lentil production in Armenia it is necessary to create new high-yielding, erect and compact varieties suitable for machine harvesting. However, the development of a lentil variety by hybridization or other methods of classic breeding is impracticable due to its reproduction biology. Lentil is a self-pollined plant with small flowers, 2-3 flowers on each pedicle. Flowers are 3-4 mm in diameter, with varied maturity, anthers opening in buds and almost imperceptible with the naked eye. That is why the development of new varieties by means of synthetic breeding is technically impossible. Proceeding from biological peculiarities of lentil, the development of new varieties will be possible only by means of studying the world collection and revealing suitable germplasm for the given climatic area. ICARDA was the very institution to provide us with such opportunity. As a result, we have enriched our assortment with new varieties in 2002. Lentil breeding and seed multiplication has been carried out in Armenia at the Gyumri (Leninakan) Breeding Station since 1950 (T. V. Mirzoyan, A. P. Vemigor, P. P. Nazaretian and others). For several decades, the station breeders have been engaged in studying hundreds of lentil entries. As a result, two varieties have been selected and introduced into production: Talinskaya 6 (1957) and Haykakan 88 (1990). The germplasm of lentil was renewed in 2002, when over 200 numbers of variety samples of world collection were received from ICARDA. These varieties have been grouped according to their agro-biological purposes as follows: a) small-seed varieties from Lentil International Cold Tolerance Nursery, 2002, consisting of 25 entries (entries 38202-38229); b) large-grained varieties from Lentil International Elite Nursery Large, 2002-24 entries (entries 31201-31225); c) intermediate varieties from Lentil International Drought Tolerance Nursery Large, 2002- 35 entries (entries 39202-39236) d) early-maturing varieties from Lentil International Elite Nursery Ear1y, 2002- 24 entries (entries 31201-31225); e) Small-seed intermediate varieties from Lentil International Elite Nursery- Small Seed, 2002 -80 entries (entries 39201-32281). Together with this germplasm, 30 other lines from old collections of VIR were tested. The experimental results showed that the early-maturing and drought-tolerant varieties to be more tolerant to dryland conditions. Their days to maturity were by 10-15 days higher as compared to other varieties, not differing much from them in yield. In the dry year of 2003, entries from the third (Lentil International Drought Tolerance Nursery Large) and fourth nurseries (Lentil International Elite Nursery Early) were found to be drought-tolerant. These entries withstood dry weather conditions, continued to vegetate, were not prone to sudden withering and tolerated drought. They matured in 70-75 days, which was 10-15 days more as compared to our two check varieties Takinksi 6 and Aykakan 88 in the dry year. The number of days to maturity of the two checks in 2002 (favorable with higher rainfall provided) made on the average 81 to 85 days, respectively. While they dropped to as low as 50-52 days in the dry 2003 year (i.e. matured a month earlier). All this could not but affect the accumulation of seed yield, which was 2-3 times less in 2003. According to the agronomic traits, the studied varieties perceptibly exceed the registered Armenian varieties (Talinski 6 and Haykakan 88), with some of them being of interest for breeding purposes because of shape, homogeneity and attractive color. Agrochemical investigations prove that by the content of protein and other nutrients these varieties are not inferior to the local varieties. On the contrary, in some varieties this index is higher. The highest protein and nitrogen content was found in the varieties (entries .No 32214,38219,32264,2514 Portuguese ), where the protein content makes 30- 32.2% and nitrogen -4.8-5.2%, exceeding the standards by 3.2-5.2% and 0.5-0.8 %, respectively. Summarizing the above, it may be concluded that among the evaluated lines there are high-yielding and erect types adapted to machine harvesting and having good prospects for being used in breeding for a new lentil variety. This would be a stimulus for enlarging areas sown to this valuable food crop.
633.1147 / BED