U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists in California have developed 16 new lettuce breeding lines.
BY SHARON DURHAM
These lettuces include 6 icebergs, 4 romaines, and 6 leaf lettuces. The research group’s goal is to develop and release lettuce lines with combined resistance to pests and diseases and with as many different traits as possible that are advantageous to producers and consumers. Of the six iceberg lettuce lines, five are suitable for salad-blend and whole-head markets.
According to researches, two of the romaine lettuce lines are appropriate for salad-blend, spring-mix and whole-head production. One of the other lines can’t be used for fresh-cut products because it decays rapidly after processing, but it is suitable for the whole-head market. Each of these three breeding lines has resistance to dieback, a plant disease to which most of the currently grown romaine cultivars are susceptible.
Each of the six leaf-lettuce breeding lines is acceptable for commercial production as a salad blend or spring mix. Three could also be used for whole-plant production, and two lines demonstrated very high field resistance to downy mildew. (SOURCE: Agricultural Research Service)
Photo: José Orozco
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