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Mutagenic effects of sodium azide on the survival and morphological characters of tomato varieties

C.A. Adeosun
K.A. Elem
C.D. Eze


Sodium Azide (SA)-induced mutagenic variability was studied on four tomato varieties namely Roma vf, Roma savannah, Tropimech and Tima. The SA concentrations used were 0.1%, 0.3%, 0.5% and 0.7%, with 0.0% as control to determine the percentage emergence and growth parameters of the tomato varieties. The plant seeds were pretreated with the various concentrations of the mutagen before planting. The seedlings were raised in the nursery and transplanted after 30 days of planting into the field in polythene bags filled with 70g of a mixture of soil and farm yard manure. The experiment was carried out in randomised complete block design with three replicates. Increase in SA concentration caused a remarkable decrease in the percentage emergence and all other growth parameters evaluated. The effect of the interaction between variety and SA concentration revealed that the interaction was not significantly different from the control at P≤0.05 on the number of leaves, number of branches and leaf length, but the difference was significant for plant height. Formation of two stems was observed at 0.3% Sodium Azide for Roma vf. variety. The 0.1% and 0.3% concentrations of Sodium Azide seem to be promising treatments under the experimental conditions and thus could be used to induce variations for tomato crop improvement. Tima and Roma savannah performed better and were resistant to the mutagen than other varieties, hence they can be recommended as good varieties for further breeding purposes; also Sodium Azide could be a good mutagen for the improvement of tomato plants.

Keywords: Tomato, growth characters, mutagenic, Sodium Azide, morphological variability.

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print ISSN: 0189-1731