In the present investigation, thirty gladiolus (Gladiolus hybridus Hort) genotypes were assessed to know the nature and magnitude of genetic divergence using Mahalanobis D2 statistics. Genetic diversity study indicated that among the 17 characters, most of the flower characters contributed towards diversity. Floret diameter contributed maximum towards genetic divergence followed by number of florets per spike, vase life, spike length and plant height.Thirty genotypes were grouped into 8 clusters and among them, cluster I was the largest with 9 genotypes followed by cluster II having 7 genotypes, and IV cluster 6 and cluster III with 3 genotypes each. Clusters were of V, VII and VIII solitary type means they having only one genotype in their group. Divergence values (D2 value) ranged from zero to 7.97 indicating considerable amount of moderate variability in the material studied. Information generated from the present study would be useful in selection of parents for future breeding programme for flower quality improvement in gladiolus. It is desirable to select genotypes from clusters having high cluster means and also with high flower character like spike length as parents for future recombination breeding programmes.
Cluster mean, Genetic divergence, Gladiolus genotypes, Intra and inter cluster
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