The 237 annual and perennial species out

 The
genus Trifolium commonly called clovers comprises of 237 annual and
perennial species out of which 25 species are agriculturally important as
cultivated and pasture crops. Among the pasture species, White clover (Trifolim repens L.) is one of the most
nutritious and widely grown forage legumes in the world.  In India White clover is a common component in
cool season perennial grass pastures in HP and J&K. Being an important component
of temperate grassland, diminutive efforts has been made in genetic improvement
of white clover. The first step in a genetic improvement programme is to
assemble and evaluate a comprehensive germplasm collection. Subsequent breeding
utilizes genetic diversity within the collection and success from breeding
depends on the genetic variation present. Information on the
variation available for different plant attributes has enabled germplasm
collections to be effectively utilized in plant breeding. ICAR-Indian Grassland Fodder
Research Institute, Himachal Pasture Land, Palampur, Himachal Pradesh, India has been
developed and maintained An indigenous and exotic collection of white clover
germplasm.  This collection of 262
accessions was characterized under field conditions as a preliminary study of
the genotypic variation for biomss and seed yield contributing traits viz., Days to 50% flowering,
Days to maturity, Plant height, Mid leaflet length, Mid leaflet width, Petiole
length, Diameter of petiole, Number of stolons, Stolon length, Diameter of
stolon, Nodes/stolon, Internode length, number of heads/plant, Diameter of head
(cm), number of Florets/head, length of florate (cm), Seed/floret, Seed/head,
total fresh herbage yield, 1000 seed weight (g), seed yield (g/sq.m.).
Characterized germplasm showed sufficient variation among the populations as
revealed by range and coefficient of variation. Out of 262, ten high biomass
producing populations were selected and planted in randomized complete block
design with check variety cv. Palampur Composite-1. Selected populations were evaluated
for two consecutive years for herbage yield, herbage quality (Crude protein,
ADF, NDF, IVDMD) and seed yield potential. Average herbage yield of three
populations viz., RRCPL-13 (15.74 q/ha/year), RRCPL-19 (17.25 q/ha/year), RRCPL-27
(18.79 q/ha/year) were better than the check variety Palampur Composite-1
(14.99 q/ha/year). These three populations were contributed to All India
Coordinated Research Project (Forage Crops and Utilization) for further multilocation
testing.