Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Plant Science

First Advisor

Cahrles L. Lay


From a historical standpoint, flax or linseed is one of the oldest crops currently under cultivation. Flax is widely adapted to a range of climatic and edaphic conditions. Cultivation of flax in the U.S. started during the colonial period following the settlers westward migration to the Dakotas. In the U.S., flax is an important oilseed crop being used primarily as a drying oil for industrial coatings. At present, the major flax producing states are the Dakotas and Minnesota. The concentration of flax acreage in those states has been attributed to favorable climatic conditions. However, the average seed yield of flax in the north central states is comparatively low i.e. 501-564 kg/ha, compared to seed yield of 2500-3136 kg/ha attained in the Imperial Valley of California. Limitations to seed yield have been a major concern of researchers trying to develop high yielding flax cultivars. Researchers involved in flax improvement have provided some information on factors associated with low seed yield in flax. Lay et al suggested concentration on several physiological parameters to identify superior genotypes. Dybing stated that physiological or biochemical studies broaden the scope of understanding on the factors limiting flax seed yield. Comstock concluded that there is a wide enough array of genetic diversity in the Flax World Collection, which currently consists of over 3000 accessions, to meet any breeding objective. Yield is a complex trait influenced by a genotype, its environment and their interactions. Seed yield can be viewed as the product of seeds per boll, bolls per unit area and seed size. Progress for the improvement of seed yield may be more rapid by selecting for seed yield-correlated components. Usually, seed yield has a low heritability and is governed by a large number of genes. Its low heritability makes it difficult to attain fast and rapid yield improvement. Knowledge of the heritability of seed yield and its components, plus their correlations, is necessary to design a successful selection scheme for developing high yielding and stable cultivars. A knowledge of harvest index may also aid in identifying genotypes. with efficient translocating ability of the assimilate from leaves, stems and roots to the seed. This study was conducted using F 2 derived lines in F 6 from crosses of four flax lines differing in seed yield potential. The principle objectives of the study were: 1. To estimate the magnitude of genetic variation and heritability of seed yield, its components and harvest index in four flax crosses. 2. To determine the associations to seed yield of its components and harvest index.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Flax -- Genetics
Flax -- Quality
Flaxseed -- Quality



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


No Copyright - United State