Univariate and multivariate analysis performed on bio-agronomical traits of Cucumis melo L. germplasm

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A large collection of melon (Cucumis melo L.) germplasm has been established at the Section of Genetics and Plant Breeding, Bari University (Italy). In the present work, data regarding the variation of 20 bio-agronomical traits recorded on entries and landraces collected in Albania and Apulia region (Southern Italy) are reported. The main objective of the study was to assess and describe, by means of univariate and multivariate analyses, the genetic diversity in the collection composed by genotypes classified in the Inodorus and Cantalupensis groups. The results obtained showed a large variation for all the traits examined. Furthermore, it was possible to identify valuable genotypes for future breeding programmes aimed at improving melon traits, particularly for the Inodorus group, which is an important crop in many Southern Italian sites. Genotypes of interest were especially selected for earliness and lateness, fruit shape, soluble solids content, storage time and fruit firmness.

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