Cultivar Selection

Duane W. Greene

Each year, chance seedlings are found in orchards, hedgerows, and fields, and thousands of crosses are made by fruit breeders. Some seedlings have obvious flaws that make their elimination relatively easy. However, a large number of chance seedlings and controlled crosses are evaluated further to identify the few cultivars that will have broad consumer appeal. A new fruit selection must have a basic set of attributes in order to become a new and important commercial cultivar. Specific criteria and the importance of individual traits may vary with region or country. This chapter discusses the criteria used in identifying the very small select group of temperate fruit that will or may become commercially important.

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