Use of GGE biplot for targeting early maturing maize cultivars to mega-environments in West Africa
Maize (Zea mays L.) is an important staple food consumed by people with varying food preferences and socioeconomic backgrounds in West Africa (WA). Genotype by environment interactions (G×E) exist in WA implying the need for extensive testing of cultivars in multiple environments over years before cultivar realistic recommendations can be made. This study examined the effect of G×E on the performance and stability of early cultivars and to identify core test locations in the mega-environments of WA. Across locations, 2004 TZE-W Pop STR C4 produced the highest grain yield and was the most stable cultivar. DMR-ESRW QPM produced the lowest yield. The test environments contributed about 83.4% of the total variation in grain yield, while genotypes accounted for 1.5% and G × E, 11%. Test environments were classified into four mega-environments, namely, Katibougou, Sotouboua, Ejura, and Bagou as the first group; the second group consisted of Manga, Nyankpala, Bagauda, Yendi, Angaredebou, Mokwa, Katibougou, and Zaria; while the third group comprise of Ativeme, and Ikenne; and the fourth, Ina. Test locations Ejura, Sotouboua and Bagou and Katibougou were highly correlated in their ranking of the genotypes in group 1, suggesting that a promising early maturing cultivar selected in one of these locations in one country will also be suitable for production in the other locations within the same mega-environments in different countries. Kita was identified as the ideal location, while Zaria was close to the ideal location.
Key Words: Genotypes, multiple environment, Zea mays