versión impresa ISSN 1405-3195
MORA-LOPEZ, J. Luis et al. Morphological variation and humanization of Agave genus, Salmianae section. Agrociencia [online]. 2011, vol.45, n.4, pp. 465-477. ISSN 1405-3195.
Although the pulque magueys (genus Agave) have an important function in the development of the human populations of Mesoamerica, the study of their humanization is incipient. The objective of the present study was to know the morphological variability of the pulque magueys of the Salmianae section of the genus Agave with respect to their humanization. Botanical explorations were carried out, and 62 variants were registered, in which 48 morphological attributes were measured. The applied analyses of ordination and classification reveal, in the humanization process, tendencies of domestication toward larger size of the rosette and reduction of the mechanical protection structures. The species with highest degree of humanization was Agave mapisaga, with small teeth and large rosettes, found under cultivation only in plantations or edges of agricultural plots. In contrast, the least humanized or wild species was A. macroculmis, with small plants, large thorns and teeth, and scantly cultivated. On the other hand, A. salmiana presented the widest morphological variability and the greatest diversity of environments and uses.
Palabras llave : Agave macroculmis; Agave mapisaga; Agave salmiana; morphological variation; domestication.