, 213:99 | Cite as

Response to selection for improved nitrogen fixation in common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.)

  • Mehdi Farid
  • Hugh J. Earl
  • K. Peter Pauls
  • Alireza Navabi


Breeding for high symbiotic nitrogen (N) fixation (SNF) in common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) is expected to contribute to reduced application of chemical fertilizers in cropping systems involving common bean. The magnitude of variation and the genetic and phenotypic correlation among seed yield, SNF, estimated as the percentage of nitrogen derived from atmosphere, and related traits were studied in a population of 140 F4-derived F5 recombinant inbred lines, developed from a cross between low- and high-SNF bean genotypes ‘Sanilac’ and ‘Mist’, respectively. The experiment was conducted in a total of five location-years in Ontario, Canada, from 2011 to 2013. These location-years were grouped into stress- and optimum moisture test sites, based on the total precipitation during the growing season. In each test site two nitrogen supply management strategies, SNF-dependent and N fertilizer-dependent, were simulated separately in the field by inoculating the seed with a commercial Rhizobium leguminosarum bv. phaseoli and by application of N fertilizers at 100 kg ha−1, respectively. The genetic variation was significant for seed yield, SNF and related traits. The heritability of the traits ranged from 14 to 71% and 4 to 25% in optimum moisture and in stress environments, respectively. No significant correlation between SNF and seed yield indicated that selection for high SNF does not necessarily lead to greater seed yield and that selection for both traits should be performed simultaneously.


Common bean Symbiotic nitrogen fixation Genetic gain Heritability Response to selection 



Technical assistance of Tom Smith, Terry Rupert, BaiLing Zhang, Kathleen Keenan, Josh Good, Melanie Wolters, Anastasia Chechulina, Alison Core, Melinda Drummond, Alison Core, Kristina Dydensborg and financial support of the project by the Ontario Bean Growers, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Agriculture Adaptation Council, and the Ontario Ministry of Research and Innovation are duly acknowledged.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mehdi Farid
    • 1
    • 2
  • Hugh J. Earl
    • 1
  • K. Peter Pauls
    • 1
  • Alireza Navabi
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Plant Agriculture, Ontario Agricultural CollegeUniversity of GuelphGuelphCanada
  2. 2.Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional ScienceUniversity of AlbertaEdmontonCanada

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