Sajad Jafari, Mohammad Reza Hassandokht, Mahdi Taheri and Abdolkarim Kashi
Two Allium species (A. akaka S.G. Gmelin and A. elburzense W.) native to Iran are used locally as the fresh vegetables and in medical therapy. They are not cultivated, but are collected from the wild, thus, will soon be threatened with extinction. In this study, the diversity of 15 wild accessions (4 accessions of A. elburzense endemic of Iran and 11 accessions of A. akaka) collected from the north-western part of Iran were evaluated with the use of 16 qualitative and 16 quantitative characteristics. The morphological characters with high heritability included leaf length, flower number in umbel, inflorescence diameter, leaf dry weight, bulb fresh weight, weight of 100 seeds, seed length and seed length/width. Results of the principal component analysis indicated that 92.52% of the observed variability was explained by the first six components. The first two components explained about 64.74% of the total observed variability. The first and third hierarchical cluster analysis included all accessions of A. akaka. The accessions of A. elburzense, except one, were placed in a separate cluster. These morphological descriptors can successfully apply for evaluating morphological diversity of Allium wild accessions and can help in horticultural usage.