Trait association and multivariate analysis in Ethiopian durum wheat (Triticum turgidium L. var. Durum) landraces
Yohannes Azene and Ahadu Menzir
Durum wheat (2n = 28, AABB, Triticum turgidum L. ssp. durum) is the most commonly cultivated form of allotetraploid wheat and is grown on 8% of the world’s wheat area. The trial was conducted at Dabat station of Gondar Agricultural Research Center, northern Ethiopia, with the objective of assessing the nature, extent, and patterns of genotypic and phenotypic variation in durum wheat accessions for yield, yield related and quality traits. 64 durum wheat landraces were evaluated using an 8x8 simple lattice design. Analysis of variance revealed the presence of highly significant (P<0.01) variations among Accessions for all traits. The observed wide range of differences among genotypes for these main traits may be due to genetic differences of genotypes and selection can be effective for different breeding programs. High values for both heritability (85.5%) and genetic advance as percent mean (19.96) for plant height indicates better possibility and easiness for improvement of the trait through selection. Genotypic and phenotypic coefficients of variation ranged from 3.08 (days to maturity) to 12.67 (thousand seed weight) and 4.94 (days to maturity) to 18.93 (grain yield t/ha), respectively. Highly significant and positive phenotypic and genotypic correlations were observed between grain yield and biological yield (rp=0.67, rg=0.59), thousand seed weight (rp=0.37, rg=0.43) and harvest index (rp=0.58, rg=0.46) respectively. The highest positive and significant genotypic direct effects on grain yield were exerted by days to maturity, biological yield and harvest index, phenotypic direct effects on grain yield were via days to heading, grain filling period, biological yield and plant height. The highest intracluster distance was observed in cluster XI (45.27) and the lowest in cluster IV (5.66). The highest inter-cluster distance was between cluster V and VIII (996.7) followed by cluster I and XI (690.71). The first five principal components, whose eigenvalues greater than one, accounted for 81.58% of the total variation. The variability and diversity of traits, which were exhibited among the genotypes, can serve in planning selection and crossing programs for durum wheat improvement and the selection and hybridization of genotypes based on the traits with a high positive correlation coefficient and direct effects on grain yield can be recommended for further yield improvement of durum wheat.