This review is about the contribution of plant breeding to sustainable agriculture.
This contribution is based upon three main pillars: (i) The enrichment of the
source material with landraces and old cultivars, accompanied by a breeding
methodology based mainly on yield components, (ii) The screening of cultivars-parents
and the choice of crossing according to their genotypic profile, proved through
a series of criteria and (iii) The selection pattern applied in segregating
generations, based on an individual plant performance as a unit of selection
and evaluation. Comparable evaluation of progenies requires concurrent selection
among and within progenies and application of high selection pressures. This
selection procedure reduces genotype x environment interaction and increases
heritability. A number of experiments as paradigms have been included throughout
the text to better understanding. Breeding assumptions such as decentralized
selection and participatory plant breeding have been accepted and incorporated
in developing selected cultivars of low-input demands. The text as a whole follows
a logical course, from source material, through breeding techniques and selection
patterns to maximize heritability and efficiency offering in this way a sound
solution in sustainable agricultural problems.
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