I’m not entirely sure why, but I get the occasional alert from something called the FAO GeoNetwork when a new dataset comes online. This morning it was global aridity. It’s not really very detailed or anything, but when something like that is available in a format that Google Earth can handle, I can very rarely resist the temptation of clicking on the link. So, in case you’re interested, this map shows the distribution of African wild Sorghum accessions in Genesys (that’s the little blue dots, which you’ll be able to see better if you click on the image — sorry about that) superimposed on that aridity thing.
This suggests to me that if you want really drought-tolerant wild Sorghum germplasm, the Sahel is where to look, rather than southern Africa or South Asia. But what about Australia, I hear you ask? Well, Genesys doesn’t have any wild sorghum from Australia, but GBIF does.
Here we’re looking at herbarium specimens, remember, rather than genebank accessions, but it does seem that Australia may be a slightly better bet for aridity-adapted wild sorghums than Africa. But for hyper-arid adaptation, it’s the Sahara for you.