Foxtail millet (Setaria italica) is an important grain crop that is grown in arid regions. Here we sequenced 916 diverse foxtail millet varieties, identified 2.58 million SNPs and used 0.8 million common SNPs to construct a haplotype map of the foxtail millet genome. We classified the foxtail millet varieties into two divergent groups that are strongly correlated with early and late flowering times. We phenotyped the 916 varieties under five different environments and identified 512 loci associated with 47 agronomic traits by genome-wide association studies. We performed a de novo assembly of deeply sequenced genomes of a Setaria viridis accession (the wild progenitor of S. italica) and an S. italica variety and identified complex interspecies and intraspecies variants.
We also identified 36 selective sweeps that seem to have occurred during modern breeding. This study provides fundamental resources for genetics research and genetic improvement in foxtail millet.