One of the world centres of crop evolution and origin, Ethiopia has long been recognized as an important area of diversity for several major and various minor crops. Based on an international conference held in Addis Ababa, this book describes how this genetic diversity is of vital importance in breeding varieties of crops with desirable characteristics such as increased resistance to pests and diseases and greater adaptation to heat and drought. The three main sections in the book consider the Ethiopian centre of diversity, germplasm collection and conservation in Ethiopia and the evaluation and utilization of Ethiopian genetic resources. A broad range of food and feed crops and plants of medicinal and industrial importance are discussed, both at a national and international level. A brief account of those conservation strategies and genebank problems unique to Ethiopia is also given. The importance of Ethiopia's plant genetic resources to world agriculture has been demonstrated on more than one occasion.
Paperback re-issue; originally published in 1991.
Part I. General Introduction: 1. An Ethiopian perspective on conservation and utilization of plant genetic resources M. Worede; Part II. The Ethiopian Centre of Diversity: 2. The Ethiopian gene centre and its genetic diversity J. M. M. Engels and J. G. Hawkes; 3. Crops with wild relatives found in Ethiopia S. B. Edwards; 4. Diversity of the Ethiopian flora T. Berhan and G. Egziabher; 5. Forest genetic resources of Ethiopia J. De Vletter; 6. Plants as a primary source of drugs in the traditional health practices of Ethiopia D. Abebe and E. Hagos; 7. Traditional aromatic and perfume plants in Central Ethiopia E. Goettsch; 8. Spice germplasm in Ethiopia E. Goettsch; 9. A diversity study in Ethiopian barley J. M. M. Engles; 10. Sorghum history in relation to Ethiopia H. Doggett; 11. Prehistoric Ethiopia and India: contacts through sorghum and millet genetic resources K. L. Mehra; 12. Ethiopian fungal gene resources and the need for their conservation D. J. Bhat and E. Bekele; 13. Konso agriculture and its plant genetic resources J. M. M. Engels and E. Goettsch; Part III. Germplasm Collection and Conservation in Ethiopia: 14. Theory and practice of collecting germplasm in a centre of diversity J. G. Hawkes; 15. A decade of germplasm exploration and collection activities by the Plant Genetic Resources Centre/Ethiopia (PGRC/E) A. Demissi; 16. Collection of Ethiopian forage germplasm at the International Livestock Centre for Africa J. Hanson and S. Mengistu; 17. Germplasm conservation at the PGRC/E R. Feyissa; 18. The strategic area seed reserve project in Ethiopia W. Woldemariam and F. Pinto; 19. Documentation at PGRC E E. Sendek and J. M. M. Engels; Part IV. Evaluation and Utilization of Ethiopian Genetic Resources: 20. Germplasm evaluation with special reference to the role of taxonomy in genebanks J. G. Hawkes; 21. Crop germplasm.
Plant breeders, geneticists, and botanists will find the book useful. Biological Abstracts "Too often we view plant genetic resources as diffusion out of the Near Eastern center into North Africa, Ethiopia, and Northern India; we often forget that there were contacts of people and crops in other directions. This volume is important as an antidote to an Aryan-centered view of the world...Plant breeders of crops with Ethiopian germplasm will find this book worth reading." Giles Waines, The Quarterly Review of Biology