Graduate Thesis Or Dissertation

 

Genetics of stem volume, stem form, and branch characteristics in sapling Noble fir Public Deposited

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https://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/w3763874m

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  • Noble fir (Abies procera Rehd.), an important conifer in the Pacific Northwest, is valuable for timber, Christmas trees, and greenery products. A number of tree improvement programs emphasizing genetic improvement of bole volume growth are underway in this species. The purpose of this study was to estimate genetic control of stem volume, stem form, and branching traits and the genetic interrelationships among these traits in sapling Noble fir eleven years old. Trees from sixty families growing on three progeny test sites in southwest Washington were utilized. Large family x site interactions were evident when all 3 sites were analyzed together, consequently sites were grouped into low (two sites) and high (one site) planting environments for genetic parameter estimation. Significant amounts of family variation were present in at east one environment for ten of the thirteen traits examined. Mean estimates of individual narrow-sense heritabilities were low to moderate for all traits: volume (.22), height (.31), stem diameter (.21), taper (.09), stem sinuosity (.33), branch diameter ratio (.15), branch length ratio (.49), branch angle (.23), branch number (.10), and knot index (.13). Family heritabilities for size traits were often twice as large as individual heritabilities. Genetic correlations were strong and positive among stem growth traits (>.73), between branch length ratio and branch diameter ratio (.75), and between sinuosity and stem growth traits (.49-.54). With the exception of branch number, genetic correlations between branch traits and stem growth were weak or favorable, such that selection for stem volume should little or no negative impact on branching characteristics. Amounts of genetic and phenotypic variation present indicate moderate gains from selection and breeding programs are possible for stem growth, while lesser gains can be achieved for stem form and branching traits.
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