Understanding the genetic variability and diversity of crops is the basis for breeding and improving of crops. Sixty four Ethiopian hot pepper genotypes were evaluated in 8×8 simple lattice design for genetic variability in green fruit yield and yield related traits at Axum Agricultural Research Center during 2018/2019 under irrigation. Data were collected on green pod yield and yield related characters. The analysis of variance showed significant amount of variations among genotypes in their mean performances of studied traits. High heritability and genetic advance were observed for average fruit weight (145.03, 97.11), fruit length (97.43,98.62), number of fruits per plant (78.54,95.78), number of branches per plant (77.65, 98.64), green pod yield per plant (74.26,99.80) and fruit pericarp thickness (63.61,97.76), respectively. This indicates that these traits are predominantly governed by additive gene action. From correlation study fruit yield per plant exhibited highly significant positive association with average fruit weight (0.72, 0.71), fruit length (0.69, 0.68) and fruit diameter (0.61, 0.60)) at both genotypic and phenotypic levels, respectively. Fruit length had the highest direct effect (0.46) on fruit yield per plant, followed by average fruit weight (0.36). In general, result of this study indicated that average fruit weight, fruit length, fruit diameter and fruit pericarp thickness showed high heritability, genetic advance, positive correlation and high positive direct effects. Hence, these traits can be used as indirect selection criteria for hot pepper yield improvement program.
Key words: GCV, genetic advance, heritability, PCV, pod yield, variability.
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