Populus is a genus of fast growing trees that may be suitable as a bioenergy crop grown in short rotation, but understanding the genetic nature of yield and genotype interactions with the environment is critical in developing new high-yield genotypes for wide-scale planting. In the present study, 210 genotypes from an F2 population (Family 331; POP1) derived from a cross between Populus trichocarpa 93-968 and P. deltoides ILL-129 were grown in southern UK, central France and northern Italy.<br/><br/>The performance of POP1, based upon first- and second-year main stem traits and biomass production, improved from northern to southern Europe. Trees at the Italian site produced the highest mean biomass ranging from 0.77 to 18.06 oven-dried tonnes (ODT) ha?1 year?1, and the UK site produced the lowest mean biomass ranging from 0.18 to 10.31 ODT ha?1 year?1. Significant genotype?×?environment interactions were seen despite heritability values across sites being moderate to high. <br/><br/>Using a pseudo-testcross analysis, 37 quantitative trait loci (QTL) were identified for the maternal parent and 45 for the paternal parent for eight stem and biomass traits across the three sites. High genetic correlations between traits suggested that collocating QTL could be inferred as a single pleiotropic QTL, reducing the number of unique QTL to 23 and 24 for the maternal and paternal parent, respectively. Additive genetic effects were seen to differ significantly for eight QTL on the maternal map and 20 on the paternal map across sites.<br/><br/>An additive main effects and multiplicative interaction analysis was carried out to obtain stability parameters for each trait. These parameters were mapped as QTL, and collocation to trait QTL was accessed. Two of the eight stability QTL collocate to trait QTL on the maternal map, and 8 of the 20 stability QTL collocate to trait QTL on the paternal map, suggesting that a regulatory gene model is prevalent over an allele sensitivity model for stem trait stability across these environments. <br/
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