Morphoagronomic and molecular characterization of ornamental passion fruit cultivars

<div><p>Abstract: The objective of this work was to validate the morphoagronomic descriptors used in the protection processes of plant cultivars in Brazil, by characterizing six cultivars of ornamental passion fruit. The BRS Rubiflora, BRS Rosea Púrpura, BRS Céu do Cerrado, BRS Roseflora, BRS Estrela do Cerrado, and BRS Pérola do Cerrado cultivars, 33 morphoagronomic descriptors, and two molecular markers were used. The categorical morphoagronomic descriptors were analyzed by frequency distribution and multivariate analyses. The quantitative morphoagronomic descriptors were subjected to the analysis of variance and to the comparison of the means of each cultivar. The random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) and the inter-simple sequence repeats (ISSR) markers were used for molecular analysis. A high-validation rate was observed for the morphoagronomic descriptors used in the protection of plant cultivars. The analyses of variance showed significant differences between the quantitative descriptors, and the molecular markers confirmed the genetic differences among the cultivars. There was a high correlation between the calculated distances based on the categorical morphoagronomic descriptors and molecular markers. The morphoagronomic descriptors and molecular markers are useful and complementary for the characterization and differentiation of cultivars.</p></div>