Morning flowering in wild rice for heat tolerance


Rice is particularly vulnerable to heat stress during the growing season. For example, Peng et al. 2004 [i] report a 10% decrease in rice yield for every 1°C increase in growing-season minimum temperature in the dry season, a general result that has been confirmed by other studies. [ii]

Luckily, genes from the wild rice genepool may help. Oryza officinalis, a wild rice species in the secondary genepool, possesses the genetic basis for the early-morning flowering trait. Scientists have identified the exact genetic system underlying this trait and have introduced it into several cultivated rice varieties. [iii]

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