Phenotyping for abiotic stress tolerance in maize: waterlogging stress. A field manual

Describes the development of effective phenotyping systems for various stages of waterlogging stress in maize.

Maize crops grown during the summer rainy season in the tropics occasionally face extreme weather conditions that limit crop establishment and yield potential. Among various abiotic stresses, contingent/intermittent soil waterlogging is one of the important constraints for maize production in the Asian tropics and many other maize growing areas around the world.

This manual was developed for maize breeders and field technicians who manage screening/phenotyping for waterlogging tolerance with the purpose of identifying genotypic variability in maize for use in breeding programs targeting waterlogging tolerant maize.

It will enable them to:

  • Develop a suitable phenotyping system for various stages of waterlogging stress, including pre-screening of large sets of genotypes in a semi-controlled pot culture system and evaluation under field conditions.
  • Phenotype for waterlogging tolerance using suitable secondary traits in addition to grain yield.
  • Reduce experimental error and improve heritability of the experiment through proper stress management.