Knowledge of the extent and pattern of genetic diversity within and among populations is crucial to identify useful breeding materials and design appropriate collection and conservation strategies. Genetic diversity of 160 durum wheat (Triticum durum Desf) accessions was studied using 15 morpho-agronomic traits. The field studies for morphological characterization were undertaken at Adadi Maryam and Ginchi locations using randomized complete block design with two replications. The average linkage technique of clustering produced a more understandable portrayal of the 160 durum wheat accessions and released varieties by grouping them into seven clusters with inter-cluster D2 values ranged from 13.72 to 235. The highest genetic distances (253) was observed between cluster five (improved varieties) and cluster three accessions. The minimum genetic distance (13.72) was observed between cluster one and two both are landrace collections. Five of the 15 principal components accounted for more than 76.98% of the total variation in the Ethiopian durum wheat genotypes. The first principal components accounted for 32% of the total differences. In this study, there is a moderate genetic diversity between landraces collected from Tigray, Gonder, and Wello. Landraces from these areas can be used as a source of important pre-breeding material for future breeding programs.
Key words: Landraces, durum wheat varieties, genetic distances, correlation, genetic diversity, morphological characters.
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