In order to evaluate the phenotypic variability and genetic divergence between 50 clones of the sweet potato, a test was conducted at the Experimental Station of the Federal Universidade of Tocantins, Palmas Campus, in the agricultural year of 2009/2010. The genetic diversity was assessed using the Tocher grouping optimization method. The characteristics studied were productivity, dry matter production, starch content and ethanol yield. The Tocher optimization method separated the clones into eight genetically distinct groups. The characteristics of productivity (70.15%) and ethanol yield (15.06%) were those that most affected genetic divergence among the clones. The presence of genetic variability permitted the identification of dissimilar cultivars with a high average, indicating the possibility of selecting superior genotypes for the traits studied. The Duda x 22.19, Marcela x 22.19, Barbara x 22:19, Duda x Barbara, Amanda x 22:19, Amanda x Marcela crossbreeds are those which are promising for obtaining divergent hybrids.
Ipomoea batatas; biomass; diversity