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University of Queensland (2013)

Drought resistance of turf bermudagrasses (Cynodon spp.) collected from Australian biodiversity

Zhou, Yi

Titre : Drought resistance of turf bermudagrasses (Cynodon spp.) collected from Australian biodiversity

Auteur : Zhou, Yi

Université de soutenance : University of Queensland

Grade : Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) 2013

Résumé
As a C4 grass, bermudagrasses are widely used as turf and pasture in tropical and subtropical environments. There have been no studies of drought resistance within large collections of bermudagrass. Recently, over 1,000 ecotypes of bermudagrass have been collected from different Australian climatic zones. Water is a critical resource in Australian agriculture and its conservation will be paramount as available water resources are likely to come under intense competition in the future. The study reported here focused on the assessment of this bermudagrass collection for drought resistance using field and lysimeter experiments. The major objective was to screen the collection and understand the mechanisms for drought resistance, particularly, the contributions of underground traits and soil water extraction patterns. Additional objectives were to : determine the relationship between drought resistance and the climatic zone they originated from ; compare bermudagrass with other widely used Australian warm-season turfgrasses in relation to drought resistance, water use and water use efficiency ; and evaluate the performance of drought resistant genotypes for other key turfgrass attributes of sod strength, regrowth rate after harvest and frost tolerance. To address the overall objectives, two shallow lysimeter and 11 field experiments were conducted at several Southeast Queensland locations and one location in Perth, Western Australia. In these studies turf quality (0-9) under drought, GC50 and survival period (SP) were used as the criteria of drought resistance. GC50 and SP were defined as the drought period required when green cover declined to 50% and 0%, respectively.

Mots clés : Drought Turfgrass Cynodon Water use efficiency Evapotranspiration Stomata Root length desity Sod Frost tolerance Mediterranean

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