Combining ability and heterosis studies in fodder pearl millet [Pennisetum glaucum (L.) R. Br.]
An investigation was undertaken with 54 hybrids obtained by crossing nine lines and six testers in L x T mating design to analyse heterosis and combining ability. Sixteen biometric traits were measured. The SCA variance was observed to be more than GCA variance for all the traits except for days to 50% flowering and days to green fodder harvest indicating the preponderance of non-additive gene action governing the traits studied. Results of gca effects and the mean performance of parents revealed that the genotypes viz., IP 17424, IP 17435, CO 8, GP 15074 and PT 5588 were identified as good combiners for green fodder yield and its component traits. Based on the standard heterosis over the standard check TNAU pearl millet hybrid CO 9, the hybrids viz., PT 5701 x GP 18219, CO 8 x PT 5588, CO 8 x GP 16026, IP 17424 x GP 15074, IP 17424 x PT 5682, IP 17424 x PT5365, IP 17424 x PT 5588 and IP 17424 x GP 18219 recorded superior heterosis for green fodder yield. Considering sca effects, mean performance and standard heterosis, the hybrids viz., IP 17424 x GP 15074, IP 17424 x PT 5682 and CO 8 x PT 5588 were identified as the superior performing hybrids for green fodder yield. Similarly, for high crude protein, the hybrid PT 5652 x PT 5588 was identified as the superior one. The above hybrids could be exploited further to improve green fodder yield with quality traits in pearl millet.
Key words: Combining ability, Gene action, Green fodder yield, Heterosis, Line x Tester
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