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Journal of Integrative Agriculture  2022, Vol. 21 Issue (6): 1593-1605    DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(21)63640-7
Special Issue: 麦类耕作栽培合辑Triticeae Crops Physiology · Biochemistry · Cultivation · Tillage
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Source–sink relations and responses to sink–source manipulations during grain filling in wheat
WU Xiao-li1, 2, 3*, LIU Miao1, 2, 3*, LI Chao-su1, 2, 3, Allen David (Jack) MCHUGH4, LI Ming1, XIONG Tao1, LIU Yu-bin5, TANG Yong-lu1,2,3
1 Crop Research Institute of Sichuan Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Chengdu 610066, P.R.China 
2 Key Laboratory of Crop Ecophysiology and Farming System in Southwest China, Ministry of Agriculture, Chengdu 611130, P.R.China 
3 Sichuan Provincial Key Laboratory of Water-Saving Agriculture in Hill Areas of Southern China, Chengdu 610066, P.R.China 
4 The International Wheat and Maize Improvement Centre (CIMMYT), P.R.China 
5 Xichang Agricultural Science Research Institute, Liangshan 618300, P.R.China
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2015-2017年连续2个生长季,选择西南地区广泛使用的小麦品种9个进行源库关系分析,其中3个具有不同株型品种进行花后源库操作处理:对照(Ct)、去除旗叶和倒二叶(Lr)和去除一侧小穗(Sr),设置2个施氮水平(N+, 150 kg ha-1; N-, 60 kg ha-1),研究两种氮水平下不同品种在冠层水平和单株水平上的源库关系。结果表明,Lr显著降低了3个品种的单粒重,而Sr使单粒重显著增加,表明小麦产量潜力在灌浆期受源限制较大,但源库平衡明显受气候变化和氮素亏缺的影响。籽粒产量与库容量(SICA)、粒数、生物量、SPAD值和叶面积指数呈显著正相关关系,表明源限制程度随着SICA的增加而增加。因此,当SICA增加时,育种家应更加关注源限制的影响,尤其在环境较好的条件下。川麦104属半紧凑型品种,穗子大小适中、上部叶片狭长,在源库平衡关系中表现较好,因为川麦104在Lr后籽粒重降幅小、Sr后籽粒重增幅大;花后干物质积累减少幅度最低、源库操作后灌浆期的光合产物向籽粒转移最多

Abstract  The source–sink ratio during grain filling is a critical factor that affects crop yield in wheat, and the main objective of this study was to determine the source–sink relations at both the canopy scale and the individual culm level under two nitrogen (N) levels at the post-jointing stage.  Nine widely-used cultivars were chosen for analyzing source–sink relations in southwestern China; and three typical cultivars of different plant types were subjected to artificial manipulation of the grain-filling source–sink ratio to supplement crop growth measurements.  A field experiment was conducted over two consecutive seasons under two N rates (N+, 150 kg ha–1; N–, 60 kg ha–1), and three manipulations were imposed after anthesis: control (Ct), removal of flag and penultimate leaves (Lr) and removal of spikelets on one side of each spike (Sr).  The results showed that the single grain weights in the three cultivars were significantly decreased by Lr and increased by Sr, which demonstrated that wheat grain yield potential seems more source-limited than sink-limited during grain filling, but the source–sink balance was obviously changed by climatic variations and N deficient environments.  Grain yield was highly associated with sink capacity (SICA), grain number, biomass, SPAD values, and leaf area index during grain filling, indicating a higher degree of source limitation with an increase in sink capacity.  Therefore, source limitation should be taken into account by breeders when SICA is increased, especially under non-limiting conditions.  Chuanmai 104, a half-compact type with a mid-sized spike and a long narrow upper leaf, showed relatively better performance in source–sink relations.  Since this cultivar showed the characteristics of a lower reduction in grain weight after Lr, a larger increase after Sr, and a lower reduction in post-anthesis dry matter accumulation, then the greater current photosynthesis during grain filling contributed to the grain after source and sink manipulation. 
Keywords:  source-sink relations        source-sink manipulation        grain weight        nitrogen levels  
Received: 30 June 2020   Accepted: 04 February 2021
Fund: This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31571590, 31972960), the earmarked fund for China Agriculture Research System of MOF and MARA (CARS-3-22), and the Key Project of Crop Breeding of Sichuan Province, China (2021YFYZ0005). 
About author:  WU Xiao-li, E-mail:; Correspondence TANG Yong-lu, Tel: +86-28-84504601, E-mail: * These authors contributed equally to this study.

Cite this article: 

WU Xiao-li, LIU Miao, LI Chao-su, Allen David (Jack) MCHUGH, LI Ming, XIONG Tao, LIU Yu-bin, TANG Yong-lu. 2022. Source–sink relations and responses to sink–source manipulations during grain filling in wheat. Journal of Integrative Agriculture, 21(6): 1593-1605.

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