Greenhouse experiments were conducted to determine the inheritance of the high level of southern root-knot nematode [Meloidogyne incognita (Kofoid & White) Chitwood] resistance exhibited by `Carolina Hot' cayenne pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) and to compare the genetic nature of this resistance to that exhibited by `Mississippi Nemaheart.' Evaluation of parental, F1, F2, and backcross generations of the cross `Mississippi Nemaheart' × `California Wonder' confirmed an earlier published report that the `Mississippi Nemaheart' resistance is conditioned by a single dominant gene. Evaluation of parental, F1, F2, and backcross generations of a cross between highly resistant and highly susceptible lines selected from a heterogeneous `Carolina Hot' population indicated that the resistance exhibited by `Carolina Hot' is conditioned by two genes, one dominant and one recessive. Evaluation of the parental and F2 populations of a cross between `Mississippi Nemaheart' and the highly resistant `Carolina Hot' line indicated that the dominant resistance gene in `Mississippi Nemaheart' is allelic to the dominant resistance gene in `Carolina Hot.' Comparison of the data that were collected on the parental lines in the latter cross demonstrated the superior nature of the resistance exhibited by `Carolina Hot.' The presence of the second resistance gene in `Carolina Hot' probably accounted for the higher level of resistance. The ease and reliability of evaluating plants for resistance to root-knot nematodes and the availability of a simply inherited source of resistance makes breeding for southern root-knot nematode resistance a viable objective in pepper breeding programs. This objective should be readily obtainable by the application of conventional plant breeding methodologies.
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