Variability of characteristics in new experimental hybrids of early cabbage (Brassica oleracea var. capitata L.)
Early hybrids take a significant share of the Serbian fresh vegetables market; however, all early hybrids are foreign. New domestic experimental hybrids of early cabbage have been analyzed and results are presented in this paper. In order to get a better insight in the variability among the tested hybrids, we have analyzed them for 14 characteristics by the principal component analysis (PCA) method. This paper deals with four principal components that explain 87.2% of the total variance. Out of the 14 traits analyzed, only seven traits had the highest communality with the first principal component and these were plant height, rosette diameter, the weight of the whole plant, head weight, the usable part of the head, head height and head diameter. All characteristics were positively correlated with the first principal component. Cabbage characteristics that constitute the first principal component are in fact the main objectives in programs of breeding early maturing cabbage. These characteristics explained 45.3% of the variability of the tested hybrids. If value of any of these seven characteristics is increased, the values of the other six characteristics increased proportionally. The results of this work have therefore contributed to a better understanding of the clustering of variability of the studied characteristics. These characteristics directly impact the formation of market value of new hybrids, and make them recognizable on the market.
Key words: Cabbage, head weight, principal component analysis, useful portion.