Broomrapes (Orobanche spp.) are the serious roots parasitic weed to legumes crop production in many countries. In Ethiopia, Orobanche crenata is a dominant parasite and a major constraint to faba bean (Vicia faba L.) cultivation, especially in the Northern parts of the country. Presently, it reduces crop production and has forced farmers to stop growing faba bean crop. Thus, it is necessary to find new sources of resistance, understand means of resistance mechanisms to facilitate faba bean resistance breeding, and identify the best performed with high yielding variety to sustain their production and productivity. Thus, to evaluate the performance and their degree of resistance, twenty faba bean varieties were tested under the area affected by Orobanche infestation, at Korem experimental site of Alamata Agricultural Research Center, Tigray, Ethiopia during 2017 cropping season by using Randomized Complete Block Design (RCBD). All difference among faba bean varieties was analyzed using Tukey’s Standardized Range (P ≤ 5%) Test. Higher level of broomrape infection was observed during host-pod setting stage. During evaluation, 13 out of 20 tested faba bean varieties were the superior yielding varieties (312.5 - 3129.17 kg ha-1), whereas the remaining seven varieties completely lost yield due to 100% Orobanche infestation. Cluster analysis was then carried out and the varieties were grouped into different clusters with different sizes based on their level of resistance or susceptibility. Three varieties ‘Ashenge, Dedia and Obse’ were selected for their best performance. Accordingly, Ashenge variety was selected as partially resistant with highest yield provided due to lowest occurrence of Orobanche infestation within variety. Future breeding program therefore, should mainly focus on these three selected varieties to improve the problem of faba bean production by using conventional and molecular breeding methods.
Key words: Orobanche spp., Vicia faba, resistance/tolerance.
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