Assessment of variability in phenotypic traits and agronomic performance among contrasting Nakati genotypes in central Uganda
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This study submits results on research that was carried out at Makerere University Agricultural Research Institute Kabanyolo to put forward the variability in phenotypic and agronomic traits of three Solanum aethiopicum genotypes grown in Central Uganda. The study was specifically designed to;(i) determine the phenotypic variation and performance among Nakati genotypes in central Uganda,(ii) determine the phenotypic potential of different landraces of Nakati genotypes in Central Uganda and (iii) characterize landrace genotypes for phenotypic traits in Central Uganda.An experiment was set up in a Randomized Complete Block Design (RCBD) with three replicates, the treatments being three Nakati genotypes, on raised beds (30cm), each bed was 1.2m wide and 18m long, and each bed was a block where the treatments were replicated in plots within each block. Three seeds were planted per hole at a spacing of 30cm x20cm, and thinning done at two weeks after seedling emergence. The phenotypic and agronomic traits that were under study included; leaf width and length, plant height, number of branches, leaf number, leaf type, stem color and leaf color, stem and leaf prickliness, harvest time, time to flowering and 50% flowering, plant fresh weight, fruit weight and diameter and data was recorded from ten randomly selected and tagged plants from each plot. The data was subjected to statistical analysis with the use of the R Studio. ANOVA was used to test for differences, LSD at a 5% significant level, it was cleaned in excel, converted to test file and run in one way ANOVA to compare the different nakati genotypes. The results from the data analysis showed that there were significant differences among all the three genotypes of Nakati for all parameters apart from Leaf width, indicated by,p<0.05 for all parameters. Genotypes from Central 3(Naro) performed best in quantitative agronomic and phenotypic traits, followed by those form Central 2, and genotypes from Central 1 had the least performing quantitative traits, other than fruit width and fruit diameter,therefore;genotypes from Central 3(Naro) over other genotypes because this study reveals that these genotypes are the best performing in terms of quantitative traits which are commercially desirable by consumers and farmers in business and the information on genetic variation of these genotypes in the study can be used to improve the best performing genotype through advanced trials which may aid in release of new Solanum aethiopicum varieties.