An experiment was conducted on sugarcane families belonging to the early selection stage of the Sugarcane Research Institute, Kaiyuan, Yunnan Academy, China, to evaluate them for the selection of superior families for the later stages of the breeding program. Seventy-six full-sib families and check variety were evaluated. The experiment was conducted during two growing seasons, corresponding to the plant cane and first ratoon, 2015/2016 and 2016/2017, respectively. The traits of cane yield (TCH) and juice quality were measured. Results indicate the use of the traits with high heritability as selection criteria together with sugar yield (TSH) could lead to genetic improvement in TSH. The study indicated that high estimates of genotypic coefficient of variation (GCV) and phenotypic coefficient of variation (PCV) were recorded for stalks (21.12 and 25.10), TCH (22.85 and 27.74), TSH (22.66 and 28.08). The results also revealed that seven families viz., LC03-1137×YZ89-7, LC03-1137×PS45, YT93-159×YR11-95, YR05-346×YZ05-51, FN38×GT96-211, YR10-509×FR96-405 and YT03-373×YR08-1276 were the best families across all other bi-parental families for most studied traits at early selection stages suggesting the possibility of evaluation of a large number of clones of these families, followed by selection of superior clones within these families during the next selection stages.
Key words: Sugarcane, family selection, heritability, genotypic coefficient of variation (GCV), phenotypic coefficient of variation (PCV), plant cane, first ratoon.
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