Phenotypic variation in a Germplasm Collection of pepper (Capsicum spp.) from Espírito Santo / Variação fenotípica em uma coleção de germoplasma de pimenta (Capsicum spp.) do Espírito Santo

Monique Moreira Moulin, Raissa Olmo Lacerda Pirovani, Larícia Olária Emerick Silva, Rafael Nunes de Almeida, Jardel Oliveira Santos, Talles de Oliveira Santos, Alexandre Cristiano Santos Júnior


Peppers belong to the Capsicum genus, which has an immense variety of types, sizes, colors, flavors, and pungencies, being part of the Brazilian cultural wealth and is an important genetic resource. The aim of the present study was to perform the morpho-agronomic characterization and estimate the genetic divergence between 40 accessions of pepper collected from rural producers in  eight regions of Espírito Santo: Domingos Martins, Venda Nova do Imigrante, Conceição de Castelo, Cachoeiro de Itapemirim, Alegre, Guaçuí, Colatina e Santa Teresa. The work was carried out under field conditions in Instituto Federal do Espírito Santo (IFES) - Campus de Alegre the Experimental Farm. The experimental design was completely randomized, with six replications, totaling 240 experimental plots. The accessions were characterized based on twelve morpho-agronomic traits, namely: plant height, crown diameter, fruit shape, fruit length and diameter, fruit weight, pericarp thickness, number of seeds per fruit, number of locules per fruit, stem width, and leaf width and length. A great phenotypic variability was found for the twelve traits evaluated. The genetic divergence between the accessions was estimated using the Tocher clustering method, using the Mahalanobis distance, as a measure of dissimilarity, forming seven groups. It was not possible to verify a correlation between genetic diversity and the place of origin of the accessions, since in the same group genotypes collected in quite distant rural properties were arranged. Singh's method, used to estimate the relative contribution of each trait in the expression of genetic divergence, indicated that the diameter of the fruit (28.77%) and the weight of the fruit (21.33%) were the ones that most contributed to the total divergence (50.10%) between the pepper accessions. The width and length of the leaf contributed less, representing a percentage of 2.04% and 1.26%, respectively. The morpho-agronomic characterization was efficient to estimate the genetic diversity between accessions, showing significant divergence, providing the best knowledge about the accessions, demonstrating their potential for use as parents in breeding programs. All accesses were considered distinct, which allowed to disregard the hypothesis of duplicates in the germplasm collection. There was no correlation between genetic distance and the origin of accessions, which may reflect the common practice of pepper exchanges among rural producers.


genetic resources, traditional agriculture, germoplasm characterization.

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