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Sunflower has great capacity for bridge the edible oil gap in Pakistan. It ranks second to soybean in worldwide vegetable oil production. A greenhouse experiment was performed in the research area of Department of Plant Breeding and Genetics, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad. Eleven (11) advanced lines along with Hysun-37 (Check) were evaluated under complete randomized design (CRD) replicated thrice for two water regimes and three harvestings at early developmental stage. Different morphological and physiological plant traits were recorded to find out genetic analysis of water stress tolerance in sunflower. Results for analysis of variance exhibited significantly differences among all sunflower genotypes for all the traits. Genotypes performed different under contrasting water regimes. Genotypes like A-25, A-50 and A-57 performed best under both normal and water stress condition due to increased shoot length, deep rooting pattern, increased number of root branches and possessing enormousmass of fresh and dry shoot and root traits. Presence of these enviable plant traits make them superior among all genotypes in comparison with hybrid variety. Correlation analysis indicated strong genotypic and phenotypic correlation between shoot length and shoot dry weight. Traits that possessed significant positive phenotypic correlation with shoot length were dry root weight and fresh root weight. Stress tolerant genotypes viz. A-25, A-50 and A-57 could be recommended for utilization in future sunflower breeding program and can be grown under water stress conditions for high yield.
Keywords: Correlation; Genetic variability; Seedling traits; Sunflower