Genetic diversity among accessions of Capsicum annuum L. through morphoagronomic characters
Genetic variability among pepper genotypes is essential in obtaining hybrid combinations with greater heterotic effect and in obtaining superior strains. This work’s goal was to evaluate the genetic diversity between accessions of Capsicum annuum L., indicating the selection of promising individuals for ornamental purposes. The experiment was carried out in at the Plant Biotechnology Laboratory of the Center of Agricultural Sciences, Federal University of Paraíba. The experiment was conducted in a completely randomized design with 16 treatments and eight replications. The plants were evaluated for 28 morphoagronomic traits. Data were submitted to analysis of variance and grouped according to Scott and Knott's test at 1% probability. The Tocher grouping was performed based on Mahalanobis distance and analysis of canonical variables were performed with graphical dispersion of the accessions. All variables were significant by the F test (p = 0.01) and presented high heritability and a CVg/CVe ratio higher than 1.0 for most traits, indicating genetic divergence between accessions. In keeping with the Scott-Knott's test (p = 0.01), the accessions were grouped into two to eight classes, varying according to the character. The of Tocher optimization method separated the accessions into five distinct groups. There is phenotypic divergence between the accessions of Capsicum annuum L. which can be used in ornamental peppers’ breeding programs. Only the number of stamens trait presented a heritability value (65.81%) lower than 70%. The characters that most contributed to divergence among the accessions were fresh fruit mass, stem diameter, widest fruit diameter and fruit weight. The accessions UFPB001, UFPB004, UFPB45, UFPB77.3, UFPB099, UFPB134, UFPB390 and Calypso are designated as potential accessions for ideal ornamental pepper plant with vigorous seedling, small port, large flowers and small fruits. Ornamental pepper accessions with larger anthers are indicated for selection, for facilitating the breeder’s work during flower emasculations for crossings.