Breeding for improved zinc and magnesium efficiency in wheat and barley

2001, 2017

Research organisatons
Funding source

Trial details

Researcher(s) M Unkovich, N Wilhelm and S Davey
GK McDonald, RD Graham, J Lloyd, J Lewis, P Lonergan and H Khabas-Saberi
Year(s) 2001|2017
Contributor South Australian Research and Development Institute
Trial location(s) Urrbrae, SA
Site 2, Birchip, VIC
Further information View external link
Breeding for improved zinc and magnesium efficiency in wheat and barley locations

To produce Endnote generated txt file database of research on trace elements in cropping systems of south eastern Australia.

To develop molecular markers for Zn efficiency.

Key messages
  • A literature search was conducted of research into trace elements in crop production systems of south eastern Australia.
  • References found in the "grey" literature (primarily printed material not available on-line) was summarised into key points and entered into the On Farm Trials database.
  • All of these entries, plus those found from searching the international peer reviewed journal literature were entered into an Endnote database.
  • The Endnote database is made available here, along with a text version for use by researchers.
  • This activity was funded by the GRDC More Profit from Crop Nutrition program.
  • Keywords: zinc, manganese, molybdenum, iron, copper, boron, trace elements, micronutrients.

• The +Zn treatment received 7 kg Zn/ha at sowing plus 2 foliar sprays of 0.33 kg Zn/ha • Generally, yield responses to Zn are greater in durum and bread wheat than in barley • The most inefficient lines of wheat and barley showed distinctive symptoms of Zn deficiency, such as reduced growth, pale leaves with chlorotic and necrotic lesions along the mid-vein • In 1999 a dry spring limited the yield response to Zn to about 0.5 t/ha, whereas, in 1998 yield increases up to 1 t/ha were measured • The disparity between the vegetative and the yield responses has tended to be greater in barley than in wheat • The wheat cultivars Goldmark and Kukri have low Zn efficiency, whereas the widely adapted, high yielding cultivars Trident, Krichauff and Worrakatta are Zn-efficient • Within barley, a number of Japanese breeding lines (eg SBWI-1) are very inefficient, but many current cultivars from SA as well as Arapiles (Vic.) and Stirling (WA) show a high level of efficiency • Pot assays for Zn efficiency have been developed and generally show similar rankings to the field tests • Wheat double haploid populations derived from the cross between Trident (efficient) and Songlen (inefficient) have been produced to develop molecular markers for Zn efficiency.

Lead research organisation N/A
Host research organisation South Australian Research and Development Institute
Waite Research Institute - The University of Adelaide
Trial funding source GRDC DAS00146,DAS00146
Related program More Profit from Crop Nutrition
Acknowledgments N/A
Other trial partners Not specified


Crop type Other: Multiple
Treatment type(s)
  • Variety: Type
Trial type
Trial design
Sow rate or Target density Not specified
Sowing machinery Not specified
Plot size Not specified
Plot replication Not specified
Plot blocking Not specified
Plot randomisation Not specified
Paddock history Not specified
Fertiliser Not specified
Herbicide Not specified
Insecticide Not specified
Fungicide Not specified
Pesticide Not specified
Soil amelioration Not specified
Seed treatment Not specified
Inoculant Not specified
Tillage Not specified
Other trial notes

Genc Y, McDonald GK and Graham RD (2000) Aust. J. Agric. Sci. 51, 37-46. Graham R (1991). In: Wheat for the Non-traditional Warm Areas (Ed. D.A. Saunders) (CIMMYT, Mexico DF) pp. 315-322. Graham, R.D., Ascher, J.S. and Hynes, S.C. (1992) Plant and Soil 146, 241-250. Longnecker, N.E., Graham, R.D., McCarthy, K.W., Sparrow, D.H.B, and Egan, J.P. (1990). In: Genetic Aspects of Plant Mineral Nutrition (Ed. N. El Bassam et al.) (Kluwer Academic Publishers). pp: 273-280.

Trial report and links