Exploiting Genetic Diversity for Adaptation and Mitigation of Climate Change: A Case of Finger Millet in East Africa uri icon


  • With the reality of global climate change there is a need to exploit the variation in the germplasm in order to developgenotypes adapted to these changes. This requires breeding and selection of crops at strategically selected locationsalong a rainfall/temperature gradient to enable farmers select desired cultivars. Eighty one finger millet germplasm linesfrom East Africa were evaluated in eight environments spread across Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda for adaptation,grain yield stability using the additive main effects and multiplicative interaction (AMMI) ANOVA and Genotype andGenotype x Environment (GGE) models and blast reaction under artificial and natural inoculation. Lanet 2012 longrains, Serere 2012 long rains and Miwaleni 2012 long rains were found to be the most discriminating environmentsfor the low temperature, sub-humid mid-altitude and dry lowland areas, respectively. Alupe 2012 long rains was theideal environment for blast selection. Seven genotypes were identified for yield stability across the eight environmentswhereas nine genotypes had specific adaptation. Nine genotypes were identified with resistance to three blast types.However, one and two genotypes had high resistance only to leaf and neck blast, respectively. Two resistant and 12moderately resistant genotypes to blast attained the highest grain yields and had varied maturity, plant heights andgrain colour. This will provide farmers the opportunity to select genotypes appropriate to their target agro-ecologieswith desired end-uses. The East African finger millet germplasm has high potential as a source of climate smarthigh yielding and blast resistant genotypes for direct production and/or breeding

publication date

  • 2016