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  1. Vol. 26 No. 3, p. 449-453
     
    Received: July 30, 1985
    Published: May, 1986


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doi:10.2135/cropsci1986.0011183X002600030001x

Cytogenetics of Pennisetum schweinfurthii Pilger and its Hybrids with Pearl Millet1

  1. W. W. Hanna and
  2. M. Dujardin2

Abstract

Abstract

A better understanding of the cytogenetics of wild species aids in the utilization of exotic germplasm to improve cultivated species. The objectives of this research were to describe the cytogenetics and fertility of Pennisetum schweinfurthii Pilger and the interspecific hybrids between pearl millet [Pennisetum americanum (L.) Leeke] and P. schweinfurthii. Pennisetum schweinfurthii is a sexual diploid (2n = 14 chromosomes) annual species. Pennisetum schweinfurthii is the only other Pennisetum Rich. species, other than pearl millet, reported to have 2n = 14 chromosomes and an annual growth habit. Its chromosomes are similar in size but nonhomologous to those of pearl millet. Chromosomes paired as seven bivalents at meiosis. Selfand open-pollinated seed set ranged from 40 to 56% and 40 to 91%, respectively, indicating the presence of a partial self-incompatibility mechanism in this species. Interspecific hybrids between P. schweinfurthii and pearl millet were male sterile, partially female sterile, and morphologically intermediate to both species. Chromosomes of the interspecific hybrids remained mainly as 14 univalents, but five hybrids averaged 0.48 to 1.97 bivalents per microsporocyte.

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