Studies on Evaluation and Mean Performance Associated with Yield, Quality and Pest and Disease Incidence in Eggplant (Solanum melongena L.)  

S. Ramesh Kumar1 , T. Arumugam2 , S. Balakrishan2
1. Department of Horticulture, Vanavarayar Institute of Agriculture, Manakkadavu, Pollachi-642103, TNAU, Tamil Nadu, India
2. Department of Horticulture, Agricultural College and Research Institute, TNAU, Madurai-625104, Tamil Nadu, India
Author    Correspondence author
International Journal of Horticulture, 2013, Vol. 3, No. 13   doi: 10.5376/ijh.2013.03.0013
Received: 25 Mar., 2013    Accepted: 28 Mar., 2013    Published: 31 Mar., 2013
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This is an open access article published under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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Kumar et al., 2013, Studies on Evaluation and Mean Performance Associated with Yield, Quality and Pest and Disease Incidence in Eggplant (Solanum melongena L.), International Journal of Horticulture, 2013, Vol.3, No.1270-79 (doi:10.5376/ijh.2013.03.0013)

Abstract

The per se performance of 14 eggplant genotypes and forty hybrids were studied for fruit yield and productivity traits during 2010 at College Orchard, Agricultural College and Research Institute, Madurai, India. ANOVA revealed the existence of significant difference among the genotypes/hybrids studied for all the traits indicating the presence of considerable amount of variability. Fourteen parents were evaluated on the basis of mean performance in Line x Tester analysis revealed that the lines, Palamedu local (L5), Alavayal Local (L1) and Keerikai Local (L7) and the testers EP 65 (T4) and Annamalai (T1) were adjudged to be the superior parents by expressing significant mean values for majority of the characters understudy. Hence, these parents were considered as desirable ones for construction of yield coupled with quality. The evaluation of hybrids based on per se performance disclosed that the hybrids excelled in their mean in order of merit were Palamedu Local x EP 65 (L5 x T4), Keerikai Local x KKM 1(L7 x T2), Alavayal Local x Annamalai (L1 x T1) and Alagarkovil Local x Annamalai (L4 x T1).

Keywords
Mean value; Eggplant response; Yield and quality

Brinjal (Solanum melongena L.) or eggplantis an important vegetable crop grown commercially throughout the country. In achieving the nutritional security through vegetables, brinjal crop plays a vital role. However, the present cultivation and productivity of brinjal is not sufficient enough to meet the nutritional security of increasing population (7). In this context, the knowledge about variability present in the brinjal germplasm is very useful. The information thus obtained from the basis for developing precise breeding programme. Apart from this the external appearance of brinjal fruit has equal weight age as that of production. Considering this, efforts have been diverted equally on consumer preference in terms of fruit colour, appearance, shape and overall acceptability. Exploitation of hybrid vigour or heterosis by intervarietal hybrid- dization has been a very promising line of varietal improvement in many vegetables including tomato, chilli, sweet pepper and brinjal. With ever-growing need to increase vegetable production in Asian countries and with increasing consumption of eggplant, vegetable breeders are showing greater interest in this vegetable.

Unlike tomato and sweet pepper, brinjal has considerable regional preference for shape, size and colour of fruits. Therefore, brinjal breeders have to aim at evolving genotypes that are more preferred for each region and yet be efficient and show substantial increase over the existing types in respect to yield and other economic characters. This would mainly depend upon the nature, magnitude and inter-relationship of heritable variation. In the districts of South Tamilnadu, green, green striped or green with purple striped and white coloured brinjals are preferred. Success in any breeding programme largely depends upon the selection of parents and ability of parents to produce desirable recombinants. It is also dependent to a greater extent on the knowledge of genetic architecture of the population handled by the breeder (10). Germplasm is the basic material with which a plant breeder has to initiate breeding programme. Land races are one of the important components of the germplasm and serve as the basic material for launching a crop improvement programme. Moreover the land races have a broad genetic base, which provides them wider adaptability and protection from various stresses (4).

Results and Discussion
The analysis of variance (ANOVA) for yield, yield components and quality traits were presented which revealed that significant differences existed among the genotypes for all the 15 characters. In any statistical analysis of data per se performance is the true realized mean of the recorded data and this is a direct estimate based on the observation and not on assumption. Selection of superior genotypes based on per se performance is more reliable data than any other parameter (8). The pertinent data on meanperformance of parents are detailed in Table 1. The success of crop improvement lies in the selection of suitable parents. While evaluating the genotypes, the high mean value is considered as the acceptable procedure for a long time among the breeders. In this context, the fifty four brinjal genotypes including 14 parents assembled from different geographical locations were evaluated for 15 characters and were given scores based on their significance over general mean for all the ten characters. The genotypic variance for all the characters were highly significant indicating wide variability for all the characters studied. A total of 14 parents, which include ten lines and four testers were evaluated for growth and yield component traits. The potential of a variety is judged by comparing the mean performance and combining ability of the parents (9). (3) suggested that the parents with high mean performance would be much useful in producing better offspring in any breeding programme.


Table 1 Analysis of variance for yield and quality characters


In the present investigation, five parents had high per se performance for more than one character. This include, L1 which showed significantly favourable mean values for nine characters viz., fruit pedicel length, fruit circumference, calyx length, average fruit weight, shoot borer infestation, fruit borer infestation, ascorbic acid content, total phenol content and fruit yield plant
-1. This was followed by L5 which possessed significantly favourable mean value for 8 characters viz., days to first flowering, fruit length, fruit circumference, average fruit weight, shoot borer infestation, fruit borer infestation, little leaf incidence and fruit yield plant-1. Hence, L1 was adjudged as the best parent as it recorded high per se performance for five yield attributing characters, two pest resistance and one disease resistance. 
This was followed by the next best line was L7 which also recorded superior mean performances for seven characters viz., days to first flowering,number of branches plant-1, fruit length, average fruit weight, shoot borer infestation, total phenol content and fruit yield per plant.
Among the testers, T4 had significantly high mean value for eleven characters viz., plant height, days to first flowering, fruit length, fruit pedicel length, fruit circumference, calyx length, average fruit weight, shoot borer infestation, fruit borer infestation, ascorbic acid content and total phenol content. This was followed by T1 with significantly superior mean performance for eight characters viz., number of branches plant-1, fruit length, number of fruits plant-1, average fruit weight, fruit borer infestation, ascorbic acid content, total phenol content and fruit yield plant-1. T3 was the next best with significantly higher mean values for five traits viz., days to first flowering, fruit circumference, number of fruits plant-1, shoot borer infestation and ascorbic acid content (Table 2).


Table 2 Mean performance of parents for different characters


From the above discussion, it is well known that none of the parents were found to have significantly high mean value than the respective grand mean for all the characters. As a whole, the lines Alavayal Local (L1)and Palamedu local (L5) excelled others by expressing significantly high mean value for nine characters each and Keerikai Local(L7) showed significant mean performance for eight growth and yield characters. Among the testers, EP 65 (T4) was adjudged to be good as it had significantly superior mean value for eleven characters. The next best testers were Annamalai (T1) and Punjab Sadabahar (T3) which also possessed desirable mean values for nine and five characters, respectively.
Hybridization is the most important method of crop improvement. The basic idea of hybridization is to combine favourable genes present in different parents into a single genotype. The utilization of hybrids thus obtained are utilized in two different ways viz., (i) forwarding to further generations and selecting superior segregants and releasing best recombinants after attaining homozygosity and (ii) utilizing the F1 hybrids commercially with a view to exploit heterosis.
The prime criterion used for the evaluation of hybrids was based on per se performance of different characters (Table 3). The hybrid L5×T4 exhibited significantly favourable mean performance for all the growth, yield and quality traits except plant height, fruit pedicel length, average fruit weight, fruit borer infestation and ascorbic acid content. This was followed by L7×T2 which recorded significantly favourable mean values for ten characters viz., days to first flowering, number of branches plant-1, fruit length, fruit circumference, calyx length, number of fruits plant-1, average fruit weight, fruit borer infestation, total phenol content and fruit yield plant-1. The next best hybrids are L1×T1, L4×T1, L5×T1 and L5×T3 which recorded significant mean performance for nine characters each. The hybrids L4×T2 and L6×T2 can also be considered because these hybrids had significantly favourable mean values for eight characters. Hence, the above said hybrids could be outstanding ones for improving growth, yield and quality traits coupled with lower incidence of pest and diseases.


Table 3 Mean performance of hybrids for different characters


Materials
and Methods
The experiment was conducted during kharif 2010 at College Orchard, Agricultural College and Research Institute, Madurai which is situated at 9°5 latitude and 78°5 longitude and at an elevation of 147 m above MSL. Ten lines were crossed with four testers through mating design to derive the 40 F1 hybrids. Forty hybrids along with 14 parents were raised in a Randomized Block Design (RBD) with three replications (Table 4). Thirty days-old seedlings raised in the nursery beds were transplanted on the ridges adopting a spacing of 60 cm×60 cm. Thirty plants were maintained for each hybrid and parent in each replication. Recommended cultural practices were followed uniformly to all the hybrids and parents as per the Tamilnadu Agricultural University Crop Production Guide (2005). Observations were recorded in five randomly selected plants in each replication. The data recorded for fifteen biometrical traits viz., plant height, days to first flowering, number of branches plant-1, fruit length, fruit pedicel length, fruit circumference, calyx length, number of fruits plant-1, average fruit weight, shoot borer infestation, fruit borer infestation, little leaf incidence, ascorbic acid content, total phenol content and fruit yield plant-1 in 14 parents and forty hybrids were used for estimating mean performance.


Table 4 Details of the parents used in the present study


Collection and
evaluation of parents
The experimental material consisted of 33 local types which were collected from Madurai district and four varieties have been collected at various sources.
All the local types and released varieties were evaluated for its growth, yield and quality. Ten local types out of thirty three were selected based on their yield potential and market preference and used as female parents. They are Alavayal Local, Sedapatty Local (Green), Kariapatty Local, Alagarkovil Local, Palamedu Local, Melur Local, Keerikai Local, Nilakottai Local, Singampunari Local and Sedapatty Local (Blue). Three high yielding varieties viz., Annamalai, KKM 1, Punjab Sadabahar and one fruit borer resistant/high yielding type, EP 65 were used as testers. The details of various local types, varieties and their morphological features have been presented in Table 4 and Table 5.


Table 5 Morphological features and fruit characteristics of different parents used in the study


Selfing: All the fourteen parents were maintained in a homozygous condition by continuous selfing. Hundred per cent selfing was achieved by bagging the flowers with white butter paper covers, a day prior to anthesis. When the fruits have attained marble stage, the covers were removed and the fruits were tagged. Fully ripened labeled fruits were collected individually and seeds were extracted by fermentation method. Seed moisture content was reduced to 8% by shade drying and the seeds were stored in butter paper covers for further use.
Crossing programme and production of F1 seeds: The parental seeds were sown in nursery bed and covered by the thin layer of sand and watered every day. Care was taken against damping off by drenching 0.1% of carbendazim. Thirty days old seedlings were transplanted by L×T fashion to the main field with a spacing of 60 cm between the plants and 60 cm between the rows. The standard packages of practices and plant protection measures were adopted uniformly as per the TNAU crop production guide.
Crossing technique: The fourteen parents were used for crossing to get 40 hybrids. A separate crossing block was maintained for the production of hybrid seeds. In the female parent, healthy, long or medium styled flower buds, which were likely to open on the next day, were selected for emasculation. Emasculation was carried out between 3.00 and 5.00 pm and bagged with butter paper covers. Similarly, in the male parents, a few selected flower buds for collection of pollen grains were bagged without emasculation to avoid contamination by foreign pollen. Pollen from the bagged flowers of the pollen parents were collected between 7.00 and 8.00 am in the next day and dusted on to the stigma of the emasculated flowers of the respective ovule parents. The flowers were bagged with butter paper covers and then labeled. The covers were removed after ensuring proper fruit set. The crossed fruits were harvested at full ripe stage and seeds were extracted by fermentation method. The seeds were shade dried to 8 percent moisture content and stored in butter paper covers for further breeding programme.
Evaluation of F1 hybrids: Forty hybrids along with 14 parents were raised in a randomized block design (RBD) with three replications. Thirty days-old seedlings raised in the nursery beds were transplanted on the ridges adopting a spacing of 60 cm×60 cm. Thirty plants were maintained for each hybrid and parent in each replication. Recom- mended cultural practices were followed uniformly to all the hybrids and parents. Obser- vations were recorded in five randomly selected plants in each replication. The selections were made in the F1 hybrids based on fruit shape, colour, size and fruit yield plant-1. The superior hybrids were selected and selfed. The seeds were collected from the selfed fruits and stored for further breeding programme.
Shoot borer infestation (%): The number of shoots affected by borer and total number of shoots plant-1 were recorded and the percent of shoot borer infestation was worked out.
Fruit borer infestation (%): The numbers of fruits affected by borer and total number of fruits harvested were recorded and the percent of fruit borer infestation was worked out.
Little leaf incidence (%): The number of plants affected by little leaf and total number plants available was recorded and the per cent of little leaf incidence was worked out.

Ascorbic acid (mg/100g): Ascorbic acid content was estimated by volumetric method as suggested by (1). The dried fruits were powdered and passed through 40 mesh sieve. The powdered sample (1 g) was dissolved in 4 percent oxalic acid, the volume made up to 100 mL and then centrifuged for 30 minutes at 5000 rpm. Supernatant (5 mL) solution was taken out and 100 mL of 4 percent oxalic acid was added into that and titrated against the dye solution. (Dye solution was prepared by mixing 42 mg of sodium bicarbonate with small volume of distilled water and 52 mg of 2,6 – Dichlorophenol indophenol dissolved in it and the final volume was made up to 200 mL with distilled water). The titre value was V2 mL. Ascorbic acid (100 mL) was dissolved in 100 mL of 4 percent oxalic acid and 10 mL of this solution was taken out and diluted to 100 mL with 4 percent oxalic acid. From this solution, 5 mL was taken out and 10 mL of 4 percent oxalic acid was added and titrated against the dye solution till the appearance of pink colour. This titre value was V1 mL. Amount of ascorbic acid (mg/100g) in the sample was calculated using the following formula:Ascorbic Acid=(0.5mg×V2mL×100mL)/V1mL×  5mL×weight of sample×100.   
Total phenols (mg/100g): Folin ciocalteau reagent method was followed for estimating the total phenols (2). One gram of fruit sample was ground to paste using 10 mL of 80% ethanol. The content was centrifuged for 20 minutes at 10,000 rpm. The supernatant solution (1mL) was taken in a boiling tube and added with one mL of folin ciocalteau reagent and two mLof 20% sodium carbonate. The mixture was heated for exactly one minute on a water bath. After cooling, the volume was made up to 25 mL with distilled water and read in a spectronic-20 colorimeter at 725 nm wavelength against a reagent blank with one mL of distilled water. The standard graph was drawn and the amount of phenol content in each sample was calculated and expressed as mg/100g.
Statistical analysis: The statistical parameters like mean, standard error and coefficient of variation were calculated as per the standard methods of analysis (6).
Analysis of variance: Data from mean of individual genotypes were subjected to usual method of analysis of variance (ANOVA). This was also done as suggested by (5). The significance tests were carried out for the F-value by referring to the Table given by (10). 
Authors' Contributions
Dr. S. Ramesh Kumar conceived the overall study, performed the experiment designs and drafted the manuscript. Dr. T. Arumugam and S. Balakrishnan took part in the experiment as chairman of the advisory committee. The above scientists read the manuscript and revised it. All authors had read and consent the final text.
Acknowledgements
The authors are thankful to various research institutes like Vegetable Research Station Palur, Agricultural College and Research Institute, Killikulam, Madurai and TNAU, Coimbatore for providing the germplasms to carry out the present investigation. Dr. V. Premalakshmi, Assistant Professor (Horticulture), Agricultural College and Research Institute, Madurai is duly acknowledged for giving valuable suggestions during my research period.
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