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Genetic resource management for enhancing saffron productivity in Jammu and Kashmir

Nehvi, F. A., Imran, S., Wani, S. A., Ali, G., Naseer, S., Yasmin, Salwee, Samad, S. S., Nagoo, S. A., Sethi, J.
Acta horticulturae 2018 no.1200 pp. 17-22
corms, crop yield, genetic variation, high-yielding varieties, leaves, resource management, saffron, triploidy, India
Lack of high yielding cultivars due to triploid nature of saffron is a major concern of low productivity. To explore and utilize available genetic variability in natural populations of Jammu and Kashmir, about 2500 saffron accessions collected from saffron growing areas of Jammu and Kashmir during 2002-2006 were subjected to variability and divergence studies at genetic and molecular level. Selected lines from natural population exhibited a wide range of variability for economic, morphological and corm attributing traits indicating considerable scope for saffron improvement through clonal selection. Selection scheme for more yield gains have been designed. Stability analysis of 10 elite divergent lines confirmed that behavior of tested lines was predictable over environments for floral and yield attributing characters. Considering the desired population mean coupled with non-significant bi (equal to unity) and deviation from regression (S2di) equal to zero, two lines viz; SMD-45 and SD-3 were observed to be well adapted to all the environments. The results revealed average stability of all lines for these traits except for number of radical leaves and corm yield plot-1 (SD-3). Comparison of different stability models in terms of their relative performance for different traits under study produced uniform information and ranked lines without any major disagreement. Line SMD-45 was observed to be the most stable having high saffron yield.