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Article

Evaluation of the Characteristics of Native Wild Himalayan Fig (Ficus palmata Forsk.) from Pakistan as a Potential Species for Sustainable Fruit Production

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Department of Horticulture, Faculty of Crop and Food Sciences, PMAS-Arid Agriculture University, Rawalpindi 46300, Pakistan
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Department of Horticulture, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Poonch Rawalakot, Rawalakot 12350, Pakistan
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Department of Plant Breeding and Genetics, Faculty of Crop and Food Sciences, PMAS-Arid Agriculture University, Rawalpindi 46300, Pakistan
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Department of Plant Breeding and Molecular Genetics, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Poonch Rawalakot, Rawalakot 12350, Pakistan
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Plant Pathology and Plant-Microbe Biology, School of Integrative Plant Science, Cornell University, Cornell AgriTech, Geneva, NY 14456, USA
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Department of Pomology, Division of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Zagreb, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia
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Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Francesco Sottile
Sustainability 2022, 14(1), 468; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14010468
Received: 11 December 2021 / Revised: 29 December 2021 / Accepted: 29 December 2021 / Published: 2 January 2022
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Fruit Growing: From Orchard to Table)
Wild Himalayan figs (Ficus palmata Forsk.), native to East Asia and the Himalayan region, are closely related to the well-known cultivated fig (Ficus carica L.), which is grown mainly in the Mediterranean region. The Pakistani state of Azad Jammu and Kashmir has a rich variety of figs. However, no comprehensive study has been carried out to utilise the diversity of these wild figs for possible use in sustainable fruit production. Therefore, the present study was designed to assess the variability of 35 wild fig accessions using quantitative and qualitative traits. Descriptive statistics were used to measure quantitative characteristics, while the coefficient of variance (CV %) was analysed using SAS® version 9.1. A principal component analysis (PCA) and multivariate analysis were performed using R Studio (v1.1.4). Pearson correlation coefficients between characteristics were obtained using SPSS software. The studied accessions showed high variability and the coefficient of variation (CV) ranged from 4.46–14.81%. Days to maturity varied from 71 to 86, leaf area from 38.55 to 90.06 cm2. The fruit length, fruit diameter and fruit weight ranged from 11.25 to 29.85 mm, 11.85 to 27.49 mm and 2.65 to 9.66 g, respectively. The photosynthetic activity and total chlorophyll content also varied from 7.94 to 10.22 μmol CO2 m−2s−1 and 37.11 to 46.48 μgml−1. In most of the fig accessions studied, apical dominance was found to be ‘absent’ while fruit shape was observed to be ‘globular’. A strong correlation was observed between all the studied characteristics. In the PCA analysis, all 35 fig accessions were distributed in four quadrants and showed a great diversity. This could be a valuable gene pool for future breeding studies and provide improved quality varieties. Wild Himalayan figs from the wild are well adapted to local pedoclimatic conditions and, combined with easy propagation and production can contribute to the local economy and have a significant impact on the socio-economic and ecological balance. The results of this study show high variability in some of the studied traits of 35 accessions from different parts of Northeast Pakistan, indicating their good potential for further enhancement and utilisation in sustainable agricultural production. View Full-Text
Keywords: native germplasm; temperate fruit; wild fig; biodiversity; conservation native germplasm; temperate fruit; wild fig; biodiversity; conservation
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MDPI and ACS Style

Khan, M.R.; Khan, M.A.; Habib, U.; Maqbool, M.; Rana, R.M.; Awan, S.I.; Duralija, B. Evaluation of the Characteristics of Native Wild Himalayan Fig (Ficus palmata Forsk.) from Pakistan as a Potential Species for Sustainable Fruit Production. Sustainability 2022, 14, 468. https://doi.org/10.3390/su14010468

AMA Style

Khan MR, Khan MA, Habib U, Maqbool M, Rana RM, Awan SI, Duralija B. Evaluation of the Characteristics of Native Wild Himalayan Fig (Ficus palmata Forsk.) from Pakistan as a Potential Species for Sustainable Fruit Production. Sustainability. 2022; 14(1):468. https://doi.org/10.3390/su14010468

Chicago/Turabian Style

Khan, Muhammad R., Muhammad A. Khan, Umer Habib, Mehdi Maqbool, Rashid M. Rana, Shahid I. Awan, and Boris Duralija. 2022. "Evaluation of the Characteristics of Native Wild Himalayan Fig (Ficus palmata Forsk.) from Pakistan as a Potential Species for Sustainable Fruit Production" Sustainability 14, no. 1: 468. https://doi.org/10.3390/su14010468

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