Vol. 8 No. 1
Diversity, distribution and conservation of mulberry [Morus sp] in Himalayas
Abstract: Biodiversity covers variety of flora and fauna, their ecological roles and the genetic variability they contain. Diversity characterizes most of the life forms. The Indian sub-continent is an important center of origin of diversity of nearly 160 domesticated plant species of economic importance. Mulberry (Morus sp.) is one of them and is cultivated not only for sericulture but also for fruits, fodder, timber, fuel, wood etc. There are 4 species of mulberry viz. Morus indica, M. alba, M. laevigata and M. serrata occurring in India and are found through out the Himalayas from Kashmir in West to Assam in East. Because of its adaptabilty to cross pollination with no inter-specific reproductive barriers a vast range of diversity in the genetic stocks has crept in thereby rendering it highly heterozygous plant species as a result every plant being different from other in natural population. To augment the diversity in true sense the characterization of the texa is essential and the magnitude of diversity that has crept in the genetic stocks of the indigenous origin as regards to various qualitative characters, morphology, anatomy, propagation, reproduction, growth and biochemistry are presented in the paper. The information elucidated clearly signifies the wide range of diverseness in the indigenous mulberry genetic stocks. The conservation strategy unlike other field crops is yet to be refined for mulberry. However, means for conservation of diversity with probable risks in mulberry are discussed.
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