Improved method for fibre content and quality analysis and their application to flax genetic diversity investigations

M.J.A. van den Oever, N. Bas, L.J.M. van Soest, C. Melis, J.E.G. van Dam

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    23 Citations (Scopus)


    Evaluation for fibre content and quality in a breeding selection program is time consuming and costly. Therefore, this study aims to develop a method for fast and reproducible fibre content analysis on small flax straw samples. A protocol has been developed and verified with fibre screening methods used commonly in flax breeding. A large number of different accessions of mostly fibre flax and some linseed, present in the core collection of CGN, were grown under comparable conditions and were analysed for their bast fibre contents by warm water retting and green decortication methods. From the core collection, a selection was made of a number of high, medium and low fibre yielding flax accessions with extremes in stem length, branching or fibre bundle appearance. These were analysed with the novel fibre extraction procedure utilising short autoclave treatment in 0.05 M EDTA as calcium complexing agent. Since 1999, cultivars selected for the core were grown around Wageningen on sandy soils. The fibre content was determined by different methods and a correlation was found between the values obtained by warm water retting and the autoclave procedure. However, the data obtained by green decortication show up to 20 nd on average 15 igher fibre content values. This higher value roughly corresponds to the weight of the cuticula and remaining xylem tissue that is more efficiently removed by retting and autoclave treatments. The reproducibility of this fibre content determination method for small straw sample analysis (25 g) is a promising tool for accelerated breeding protocols
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)231-243
    JournalIndustrial Crops and Products
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2003


    • linseed linum-usitatissimum
    • dual-purpose traits
    • yield
    • cultivars
    • varieties
    • growth


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