Q. How do Mendel’s experiments show that traits may be dominant or recessive?
Mendel took pea plants with different characteristics – a tall plant and a short plant, produced progeny from them, and calculated the percentages of tall or short progeny. there were no halfway characteristics in this first generation, or F1progeny – no ‘medium-height’ plants. All plants were tall. This meant that only one of the parental traits was seen, not some mixture of the two. He carried his experiment further by getting both the parental plants and these F1 tall plants to reproduce by self-pollination The progeny of the parental plants are, of course, all tall. However, the second-generation, or F2, progeny of the F1 tall plants are not all tall. Instead, one quarter of them are short. This indicates that both the tallness and shortness traits were inherited in the F1 plants, but only the tallness trait, which was dominant, was expressed while shortness, which was recessive trait, remained dormant in F1
Mendel’s first law of inheritance states that when a pair of contrasting factors is brought in a hybrid, one factor masks or inhibits the appearance of the other. The one which inhibits is the dominant one and which is inhibited is recessive