Genetic diversity in accessions of melon belonging to momordica group

ABSTRACT The genetic divergence of melon genotypes belonging to momordica group, collected in five Brazilian States, was estimated, and the relative contribution of the morphological characters was determined for the genetic variability. The experimental design was randomized blocks, with four replicates. We evaluated 19 accessions of melon, momordica group, two accessions of cantaloupensis group and two commercial cultivars of inodorus group. These genotypes were characterized by 42 morphological descriptors. The data were submitted to Tocher and UPGMA grouping methods using the genetic dissimilarity matrix, using Mahalanobis’ distance. Singh criterion was used to identify the relative contribution of each character to the genetic divergence. Four groups of similarity were obtained in both multivariate techniques, with agreement between hierarchical UPGMA and Tocher grouping methods. The characters: pistil scar size, soluble solid content, seed length, fruit length and cotyledon length contributed with approximately 53.86% to genetic divergence among genotypes.