Variability and trait relationships among finger millet accessions in Uganda

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L. Owere
P Tongoona
J Derera
N Wanyera


Finger millet (Eleusine coracana (L.) Gaertn]) is a vital component in the farming systems of
many parts of Uganda with limited information on variability, heritability and trait association in
the country. The objective of this study was to assess the variability, heritability and trait association
of finger millet to determine the genetic potential for future use in breeding programmes. A total
of 100 accessions were evaluated for morpho-agronomic characters in a 10 x 10 lattice design at
NaSARRI and Ikulwe in Uganda for two seasons. Analysis of variance revealed mean squares of
the genotypes were significant for all the traits, with days to 50% flowering showing the least
coefficient of variation and the highest leaf blast severity. Heritability estimates ranged from
7.39% for threshing percentage to 68.4% for head blast severity; whereas values of expected
genetic advance varied from 2.00 to 79.9% for threshing percentage and head blast severity,
respectively. High heritability and genetic advance estimates were exhibited for head blast severity,
head blast incidence, productive tillers plant-1 and grain yield. When the significant correlations
were decomposed by path analysis, it revealed that, in determining yield, the most important
traits were grain mass head-1, tillering ability and reaction to head blast disease. Overall the
result revealed existence of high variability for the traits studied in the finger millet accessions
which can be utilised in genetic improvement.

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How to Cite
Owere, L. ., Tongoona, P., Derera, J., & Wanyera, N. (2015). Variability and trait relationships among finger millet accessions in Uganda. Uganda Journal of Agricultural Sciences, 16(2), 161–176. Retrieved from