Solanum aethiopicum, shum group, is an African indigenous leafy vegetable that falls in the category of Neglected and Under-Utilized Crops (NUC). It is widely consumed in Sub Saharan Africa and contributes to improving nutrition and income security especially for youth and women. Its production has been documented to generate up to USD2000/ acre for small scale farmers in Uganda (Jagwe et al, 2015) and therefore has potential to significantly improve their livelihoods. The crop is largely grown in rainfed conditions which have proven to be unreliable for optimum productivity due to climate change and climate variability. There is a need to generate varieties with improved water use efficiency (WUE) that would be adaptable to drought conditions. UCU has a collection of about 70 S.aethiopicum landrace accessions in its repository. The objectives of this research are to;
Optimize controlled experimental water stress conditions for S.aethiopicum
To characterize the germplasm collection for morphological, biochemical and physiological responses to drought stress.
To identify S.aethiopicum genotypes with optimal WUE.
This research proposes to use a total sum of USD14500 to purchase scientific equipment (Leaf area meter and a porometer) for the above study.