Phenotyping and Plant Breeding: Overcoming the Barriers
Plant breeding is based on phenotyping, not only because of tradition but also because of essence. A plant phenotype is the result of the interactions between the genome of a stationary plant and all the micro- and mega-environments encountered during its life span. Over the recent years, we have witnessed an explosion in state-of-the-art technologies developed through collaborative efforts of multidisciplinary teams to assist the process of high-throughput plant phenotyping in plant breeding (NSF, 2011), first only under controlled conditions and, more recently, also under real field conditions (Lawrence-Dill et al., 2019).
Yet, plant phenotyping is still the bottleneck for breeding and farming (Chawade et al., 2019) and the average plant-breeding program has not been adopting the new developments adequately (Awada et al., 2018) Among the solutions proposed, a major international effort is being directed towards data and protocol standardization (Pieruschka and Schurr, 2019) that will be discussed later.