The objectives of the Pulse Research Group Physiology Program is to investigate whole plant and field responses of crops, particularly pulse crops, to nutrient, water and weather.  To understand and improve yield formation in pulse crops in a warming climate.  To investigate and improve nitrogen fixation and nitrogen partitioning in pulse crop growth and yield.

Plan to achieve objectives

Crop Physiology is a modest sized program with one program leader (Dr Rosalind Bueckert), a technician and two graduate students.  Rosalind Bueckert has a collaborative project with Dr Lynne Seymour, University of Georgia, which investigates weather variables on yield response for historic yield records across the prairies.  Rosalind Bueckert, in collaboration with Pea Breeding, is also analyzing the pea variety trials for yield response to warmer weather patterns.  Graduate student Hossein Zakeri is investigating nitrogen partitioning in lentil, and graduate student Adil Choudhry is investigating various management strategies to control indeterminate growth in lentil.  Both students work on a collaborative project with Lentil Breeding and Soil Science.  Janet Pritchard is currently screening a commercial rhizobia collection to select for earlier nitrogen fixing combinations of inoculant and lentil.  She is also working with Rosalind Bueckert on screening 15 genotypes of faba bean to measure nitrogen accumulation and to develop a method to select for high nitrogen accumulating types (in collaboration with Faba Breeding).

Expected Outcomes

We expect to characterize the yield response of pea to temperature and rainfall, and to predict sensitive growth stages and yield response when certain weather occurs during specific stages.  We can identify what needs to be improved in future pea cultivars to better withstand a changing climate.  For lentil, we will have characterized nitrogen accumulation and nitrogen-related growth responses in this indeterminate crop in inoculated, non-inoculated or fertilized environments, so growers can manage crop growth for better earliness and yield.   The faba project outcome is two-fold: to provide information on the amount of nitrogen in faba stubble which will be available to succeeding crops in a rotation, and to screen for high nitrogen fixing and high nitrogen accumulating genotypes so Faba Breeding can supply good nitrogen accumulating varieties.

This project is being conducted with 15 strains belonging to the species R. leguminosarum, R. lentils, R. bangladeshense, R. binae and the lentil variety CDC Maxim in Sutherland, Saskatoon. The experiment is replicated 8 times for a total of 120 plots. At flowering I will be measuring: number of nodules (NN), location in the root (LO), color (C), nodule dry weight (NDW), root dry weight (RDW), occupancy (O). At maturity: number of pots per plant (NPP), seeds per pot (SPP), Thousand seed weight (TSW) and yield (Y).
This project is being conducted in the agriculture greenhouses with the 7 Lens species and the commercial strain of R. leguminosarum BASF 4035.
Measuring biomass (above ground plant material biomass) in 6 varieties (ILL 7716, CDC Astrix, PI 490288 LSP, CDC Redcoat, CDC Cherry, ILL 9888) with a sample (micro plot -3 replicates) taken every two weeks. To correlate biomass with a volume estimate from UAV images.
This project intends to take flowering time related data on 122 lines of the LR-11 population. Plots will be grown at 2 locations (Rosthern and Sutherland) with each site having 3 replicates grown in a randomized block design.
One replicate. Looking at domestication traits. Opportunistic phenotyping based on what they see.
This population between Eston (L. culinaris) and IG 72623 (L. odemensis) is being evaluated to investigate the genetic and phenotypic variability for agronomic and growth habit and to identify the molecular mechanisms underlying the quantitative variation for these traits in wild and cultivated lentils.
Lentil recombinant inbred lines (LR-86) derived from a cross between Lupa # 7 (L. culinaris) x BGE016880 (L. orientalis) were evaluated in five replications in 2016 in the field at the Crop Science Field Lab of the University of Saskatchewan. Days to flowering, days to maturity, plant height at maturity, shattering percentage, number of seeds per plant, and seed yield per plant were recorded. The population was genotyped and mapped using a genotyping-by-sequencing approach. Major QTLs for shattering resistance were identified on LGs 4 and 7. In 2017, the population was grown in two locations (Investigation field and Sutherland) in three replications to confirm the identified QTL for shattering resistance.
2012 to 2015
This group is involved in a wide range of biotechnology projects that accelerate the legume breeding process. Double-haploid technology has been achieved in both chickpea and field pea by the CDC group in collaboration with colleagues in France and Australia. Efforts are underway to adapt this technology to lentil. Improving efficiency and integrating these techniques into routine breeding programs to enhance genetic gain are important long-term goals.
2013 to 2015
The objectives of this study are to determine the effect of genotype and environment on iron bioavailability in a set of five pea varieties differing in phytate concentration using the Caco-2 mammalian cell bioassay, to determine whether iron bioavailability in field pea is heritable by evaluating recombinant inbred lines differing in phytate concentration using the Caco-2 mammalian cell bioassay, and to determine the effect of the pea low phytate trait on chicken performance and iron bioavailability in chicken.
2009 to 2012
The first objective is to improve the nitrogen contribution of pulses to the rotation by assessing the nitrogen budget of faba bean, a crop likely to have greater nitrogen fixation and growth than pea and lentil. The second is to measure the biomass and nitrogen content of a range of faba genotypes and cultivars. The third objective is to assess the nitrogen fixation ability of faba genotypes by shoot N metabolism under typical dryland prairie conditions and controlled stress conditions, and develop a specific amino-acid screening method to screen for high N fixation. We intend to use the results to screen a wider range of germplasm for improving future varieties.