The present investigation was carried out with the objective to find out the extent of genetic variation, heritability and genetic advance for 13 characters in 34 exotic genotypes of Italian millet during Autumn 2008 and Spring 2009. High phenotypic coefficients of variation (PCV) coupled with high genotypic coefficients of variation (GCV) were observed for grain yield per plant, ear weight, calcium content and carotene during both seasons. The trait 1000 grain weight recorded high PCV and GCV during Autumn, whereas number of productive tillers per plant and straw weight during Spring. Straw weight showed high GCV during Autumn. It indicated presence of wider variability for these traits in the genotypes studied. High heritability coupled with high genetic advance as percent of mean recorded for all characters except days to 50% flowering, days to maturity and plant height during both seasons reveals operation of additive gene action in the inheritance of these traits and improvement in these characters is possible through simple selection.
Key words: Italian millet, gene action, Seteria, foxtail millet.
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