Superior crop cultivars must be identified through multi-environment trials (MET) and on the basis of multiple traits. The objective of this study was to explore the effect of genotype (G) and genotype × environment interaction (GE) on grain yield of 17 chickpea genotypes (Cicer arietinum L.) in six different research stations of Iran. GGE (G plus GE) biplot methodology was used to evaluate phenotypic stability in genotypes. A site regression (SREG) analysis to assess G × E interactions and to identify stable genotypes of chickpea was undertaken. These genotypes were developed by various breeders at different research institutes/stations of Iran and International Center for Agricultural Research in DrayAreas (ICARDA). Results indicated that the first two principal components explained 95% of the total GGE variation, with PC1 and PC2 explaining 73 and 22%, respectively. Genotypes Flip 93-93, Flip 94-123C and S 96002 had the highest mean yield and genotype Bivanij had the poorest mean yield. Thus the performance of genotype ILC 6142 was highly variable, whereas genotypes S 96003, Flip 93-48C and S 96027 were highly stable. Collective analysis of the biplots suggests four chickpea mega-environments in Iran. The first mega-environment contained locations Kermanshah, Gorgan and Ghachsaran, with genotype Flip 93-93 being the winner. Genotype Flip 85-57 × 12-071-1005 gave the highest performance in location Ilam and genotypes S 96032 and Bivanij gave the highest performance in locations Urmia. The Lorestan made up the other mega-environment with ILC 6142 as the winner.
Key words: Cicer arietinum L., genotype × environment interaction, site regression analysis, GGEBiplot.
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