Dealing with correlation in designed field experiments: part II

Published at May 10, 2019 · 12 min read

With field experiments, studying the correlation between the observed traits may not be an easy task. Indeed, in these experiments, subjects are not independent, but they are grouped by treatment factors (e.g., genotypes or weed control methods) or by blocking factors (e.g., blocks, plots, main-plots). I have dealt with this problem in a previous post and I gave a solution based on traditional methods of data analyses.

In a recent paper, Piepho (2018) proposed a more advanced solution based on mixed models. He presented four examplary datasets and gave SAS code to analyse them, based on PROC MIXED. I was very interested in those examples, but I do not use SAS. Therefore, I tried to ‘transport’ the models in R, which turned out to be a difficult task. After struggling for awhile with several mixed model packages, I came to an acceptable solution, which I would like to share.

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