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Evaluation of vegetable cardoon (Cynara cardunculus l.) populations for biomass production under rainfed conditions

Ochoa, M.J., Fandos, A.
Acta horticulturae 2004 no.660 pp. 235-239
Cynara cardunculus, biomass production, cardoons, demonstration farms, drought, energy, germplasm, lignocellulose, pests, temperature
The main objective of this work has been the study of nine vegetable cardoon populations, kept in the Zaragoza Germplasm Bank (BGHZ), evaluating the lignocellulose biomass production of every population, under rainfed conditions, for subsequent energy use. Field works have been carried out in an experimental farm belonging to the SIA (Servicio de Investigación Agroalimentaria), Diputación General de Aragón, from January 1998 to September 2002. The following characters indicating high biomass production have been considered: Growth rate, plant ripeness time, drying ability, weight of the different fractions of the ripe plant as well as resistance to pests, drought and extreme temperatures. The studied populations have been compared to a control one considered very good as biomass producer and well adapted to drought. According to the results, four populations are remarkable due to their high biomass production and adaptation to the agro-climatic conditions of the studied area: BGHZ-2195 and BGHZ-2194, with higher productions than the control, BGHZ-2492, with a similar production to the control and BGHZ-0997 with a slightly lower production than the control.