Correlations and path analysis in agronomic traits of soybeans under defoliation
Stress events or leaf damage can alter the redistribution of photoassimilates and modify the morphological traits directly related to grain yield. This study aimed to evaluate the influence of agronomic traits on grain yield in soybean crop in function of leaf defoliation. The experiment consisted of a randomized block design with three replications, arranged in a 6 x 3 + 1 factorial scheme. The factors were composed by six reprodutive stages (R1, R2, R3, R4, R5, and R6) and three defoliation levels (33%, 66%, and 99%), and one additional treatment without defoliation (control). The following traits were evaluated: plant height, number of pods per plant, number of grains per pod, thousand grain weight, and grain yield. The magnitudes of the correlations between the same traits showed high oscillation according to the defoliation level. Results revealed the potential for the indirect selection for grain yield by the traits plant height and number of grains per pods under 0% of defoliation and by the trait number of pods per plant under 33% of defoliation.
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