Normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) is considered as a potential screening tool detecting stay green traits for drought tolerance. The present study aimed to evaluate durum wheat genotypes using NDVI under drought condition and investigate its association to grain yield. NDVI scores taken at different growth stages for 64 durum wheat genotypes were replicated twice in both sandy clay and clay textured soils situated at the same geographic location of Debre-Zeit Experimental Station, Ethiopia during 2016 rainy season; also, Green Seeker (Hand held) was used to measure the quantity of photosynthetically active pigments in leaves. Measurements of NDVI were made four to five times on sunny days between booting to physiological maturity. Analysis of variance showed significant variation among genotypes at 0.01% on NDVI values across all growth stages except at physiological maturity in both sandy clay and clay soils. The NDVI scores were highly significantly associated with yield at grain filling and anthesis stages in both soil environments. Overall, it is possible to suggest that use of NDVI would help complement identification of drought tolerant genotypes on durum wheat.
Key words: Grain yield, Normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), Triticum durum.
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