3. GROWTH PERFORMANCE, VARIABILITY AND HERITABILITY STUDIES IN MELIA DUBIA CAV. by M.SATHYA AND K.T. PARTHIBAN
The increasing demand for wood and wood products in the country has attracted promotion of Agroforestry on a commercial scale. However, for want of suitable fast growing species with higher productivity, the achievement in organized agroforestry promotion is dismally modest. Under such circumstances, Melia dubia has been identified as a potential fast growing tree species amenable for incorporation in the various Agroforestry systems. The species exhibited multifarious industrial utility and its various suitable for plywood, pulp and paper production. Hence, systematic tree improvement programme has been initiated which included evaluation of sixteen clones. The clones registered significant variation for growth attributes. Among the clones evaluated, the potential of clone MD 26 is very well witnessed due to increased height, basal diameter and volume Index. This clone could be adopted immediately in agroforestry programme. The variability estimates indicated increased phenotypic coefficient of variation (PCV) compared to the corresponding genotypic coefficient of variation indicating the role environment in growth and development. Almost all the growth attributes exhibited higher heritability estimates and could play a better role in Melia improvement programme. In a holistic perspective, the current study identified MD 26 as a potential clone for adoption in industrial agroforestry plantation development.