Data for: Spring emergence and canopy development strategies in miscanthus hybrids in Mediterranean, continental and temperate European climates
Magenau, Elena (2023), Data for: Spring emergence and canopy development strategies in miscanthus hybrids in Mediterranean, continental and temperate European climates, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.gb5mkkwtq
Due to its versatility and storability, biomass is an important resource for renewable materials and energy. Miscanthus hybrids combine high yield potential, low input demand, tolerance of certain marginal land types and several ecosystem benefits. To date, miscanthus breeding has focussed on increasing yield potential by maximising radiation interception through: 1) selection for early emergence, 2) increasing the growth rate to reach canopy closure fastest possible, and 3) delayed flowering and senescence. The objective of this paper is to compare early season re-growth in miscanthus hybrids cultivated at across Europe. Determination of differences in early canopy development on end-of-year yield traits are required to provide information for breeding decisions to improve future crop performance. Therefore, a trial was planted with four miscanthus hybrids (two novel seed-based hybrids M. sinensis×sinensis (M sin×sin) and M. sacchariflorus×sinensis (M sac×sin), a novel rhizome-based M sac×sin and a standard Miscanthus×giganteus (M×g) clone) in the UK, Germany, Croatia and Italy and was monitored in the third and fourth growing season. We determined differences in base temperature, frost sensitivity and emergence strategy between the hybrids. M×g and M sac×sin mainly emerged from belowground plant organs, producing fewer but thicker shoots at the beginning of the growing season, but these shoots were susceptible to air frosts (as determined by recording 0°C at 2 m above ground surface). By contrast, M sin×sin emerged 10 days earlier avoiding damage by late spring frosts with a high number of thinner shoots from aboveground shoots. Therefore we recommend cultivating M sac×sin at locations with low risk and M sin×sin at locations with higher risk of late spring frosts. Selecting miscanthus hybrids producing shoots throughout the vegetation period is an effective strategy to limit the risk of late frost damages and avoid a reduction in yield due to a shortened growing season.
Horizon 2020 Framework Programme, Award: 745012