Estimation of heterosis in pearl millet [Pennisetum glaucum (L.)] for yield and quality traits
Five CMS lines were crossed with nine testers in a line x tester design to study the extent of heterosis in pearl millet for yield and quality traits. Heterosis was observed in both directions for most of the characters. High magnitude of heterosis was observed for plant height, ear head girth, ear head weight, grain yield per plant and harvest index. The heterosis was moderate for Fe content, Zn content and test weight. The heterobeltiosis for grain yield per plant ranged from -26.50 to 200.00 per cent, while the standard heterosis ranged from -53.38 to 37.79 per cent. The highest heterobeltiosis was recorded by cross JMSA1 20141 x 149-SB-14 and JMSA5 20142 x J-2340 followed by JMSA1 20141 x 81-SB-14, ICMA4 10444 x 149-SB-14. The cross JMSA5 20142 x J-2340, ICMA4 10444 x J-2340 and ICMA4 10444 x 149-SB-14 recorded the highest standard heterosis for grain yield per plant. These crosses also exhibited desirable heterosis for important yield attributes suggesting that the heterosis for grain yield per plant was associated with heterosis for component character. Thus, these hybrids can be commercially exploited through heterosis breeding programme after testing in multilocational trial to work out its stability and in diseases screening trial to find out its resistance capacity against major pearl millet diseases in order to achieve hybrids with high grain yield in pearl millet.
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