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Drought resistance by six Senegalese local strains of Andropogonus gayanus var. bisquamulatus through osmoregulation (P.Geerts, A. Buldgen, T. Diallo & A. Dieng)

Pascal GEERTS researcher laureate


°1973 Belgium
Agricultural engineer, option: agronomy of tropical and subtropical regions, Faculté Universitaire des Sciences Agronomiques de Gembloux, Belgium, 1996

Drought resistance by six Senegalese local strains of Andropogonus gayanus var. bisquamulatus through osmoregulation (P.Geerts, A. Buldgen, T. Diallo & A. Dieng)

The general degradation of the environment accentuated by episodes of drought, which occurred since 1970 in the Senegalese Groundnut Basin, requires the modification of the traditional farming systems and, in this context, the development of productive fodder crops aiming at the creation of a real synergy between agricultural and breeding activities. In this regard, Andropogonus gayanus var. bisquamulatus is the most suited fodder crop, thanks to its good survival through drought episodes on account of its capacity of active osmotic adjustment. The authors measured this capacity in six local strains of this variety chosen according to their phenotypic diversity and vigour. As osmoregulation is a heritable trait, a selection strategy which combines measurements of morphological characteristics associated with osmotic adjustment with measurements of the drought resistance index is proposed. Without any doubt, such a selection is essential in anticipation of further human pressure on land and future drought episodes.