1Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research, Wondo Genet Agricultural Research Center. P.O.Box 198, Shashemene, Ethiopia
2Addis Ababa University, School of Pharmacy
3Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research, Agricultural and Nutritional Research Laboratories, Ethiopia
4Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research, Wondo Genet Agricultural Research Center. P.O.Box 198, Shashemene, Ethiopia.
5Ethiopian Petroleum Enterprise, Ethiopia
6Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Energy
For determining the oil content, seed and fruit characteristics of Ethiopian Jatropha provenances, the study was conducted in five regions of Ethiopia namely Southern Nation Nationalities Peoples Regional state, Amhara region, Tigria region, Oromia region and Benishangul Gumuz Regions, where Jatropha is found abundantly. A total of 23 Zones, 36 Weredas and 40 sampling sites were considered from five regions of the country for the study. Data on seed to shell ratio, thousand seed weight, seed coat weight, endosperm weight, endosperm to seed ratio and oil content were collected and summarized. The values of seed to shell ration was ranged from 2.7 to 2.85. The 1000 seed weight was varied from 546.47 g to 714.4 g. The seeds were found to have a relatively similar endosperm to seed shell ration ranging between 1.83 and 1.87. Endosperm weight of the seeds ranges from 5.58 g to 6.27 g. Averaged over the study regions, the oil content of Ethiopian Jatropha populations ranged from 29.88% to 34.34%. Seeds with higher endosperm weight were positively and strongly associated with oil content. Hence, considering endosperm weight during selection and improvement program plays a significant role in maximizing oil content of. Jatropha provenances having oil content ranging between 30-35% are considered good for oil production. The values obtained from Ethiopian Jatropha populations growing in different regions are within the ranges of the different reports. This indicates the possibility of using the existing Jatropha populations for the production of Jatropha oil.