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Apart from this, Striga is an important parasitic weed causing immense losses in all regions in Africa. Drought stress is a major constraint to sorghum production worldwide. Although sorghum possesses excellent drought resistance compared to most other crops, improving its drought resistance would increase and stabilise grain and food production in low‐rainfall, harsh environmental regions. , 1997). , 1997). These problematic soils are major constraints for the resource‐poor tropical farmers in developing countries.

Quinby and Karper (1954) have shown that four recessive non‐linked brachytic dwarfing genes control height. Quinby et al. (1973) have shown that the duration of growth and floral initiation is controlled by four loci; involving both dominant and recessive alleles. Most tropical landraces/varieties are dominant at all four loci, but a recessive allele at Mal locus will cause them to be less photoperiod‐ sensitive and apparently less responsive to temperature variations. The genetics of resistance to most diseases caused by fungi, bacteria and virus are, in general, simple inheritance of dominant alleles.

Two inflorescence types of race maxima are recognised by Gritzenko (1960). Plants with small, essentially erect, and compact inflorescences occur in northwestern China and Mongolia. Plants from eastern China, Japan and Korea typically have large, compact and pendulous inflorescences. Cultivars from India are morphologically distinct from those of Europe and the Far East, and are recognised as race indica by Prasada Rao et al. (1987). The variability available in foxtail millet for panicle shape, size, arrangement of spikelets, tillering, seed size and colour are very diverse offering great scope for exploitation (Harinarayana and Seetharam, 1981).

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