a1 Arid Zone Research Institute (PARC), PO Box 63, Brewery Road, Quetta, Pakistan
a2 International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA), PO Box 362, Quetta, Pakistan
Experiments to evaluate the suitability of lentil lines using an innovative dual-season approach for improved and reliable production under the harsh environmental conditions of the highlands of west Asia were conducted in Balochistan for 3 years (1986/87, 1987/88 and 1988/89) by the Arid Zone Research Institute. Two ICARDA-bred lines, ILL5865 and ILL5677, when assessed using a wide range of seeding times, appeared to be sufficiently flexible and well adapted to the conditions of extreme cold and aridity to be able to replace the ultra small-seeded local landrace. These ICARDA lines have seed sizes approximately double those of the local landrace and results of consumer acceptability studies suggest that the lines will have desirable marketing qualities. These two lines were selected for further larger-scale agronomy trials at multiple sites in Balochistan in subsequent seasons. Other lines, ILL5690, ILL1939 and ILL5730, have also shown potential, but only at certain seeding times and, as such, will be retained for further assessment in ongoing germplasm evaluation trials.
Initial findings indicate that there are now good prospects for identifying dual-season lentil lines suitable for introduction into highland farming systems. However, further research will be required before new lentil lines will be an attainable reality for a large proportion of the dryland farming community of west Asia.
(Received April 18 1991)
p1 Present Address: ICARDA, PO Box 39 EMEK, 06511 Ankara, Turkey.