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Genetic improvement of cherries and plums including the development of marker-assisted selection - HH1030STF

Improved cultivars of cherry and plum are needed to help sustain the resurgence of the UK stone-fruit industry. The recent projects MAFF HH1017STT and others have developed genetic material and selection techniques, both conventional and marker-based. The proposed project will build on this by: developing breeding lines for cherry and scions and cherry rootstocks; by developing cherry markers; clarifying incompatibility genetics in cherry and plum; and disseminating information and transferring selections to the Plum and Cherry Clubs for trial. These selections, with improved combinations of e.g. black-fly resistance, late ripening, fruit quality and self-compatibility should, when commercialised, aid the competitiveness of the industry by reducing costs of production or increasing sales. The contractors have the necessary expertise in breeding and genetics to conduct this project effectively and have well equipped field, glasshouse and laboratory facilities.
1. Develop bredding lines of cherry combining e.g. late ripening, self-fertility, and black-fly resistance with good fruit quality for scions, and dwarfing, precocity and ease of rooting for rootstocks.
2. Develop markers for important cherry characters still unmapped, including fruit colour, late ripening and dwarf habit.
3. Develop breeding lines of plum combining e.g. self-fertility with large size, attractive appearance and good fruit quality.
4. Try microsatellite markers in plum to assess prospects for mapping.
5. Clarify incompatibility genetics in cherry and plum with a view to identifying appropriate pollinators and selecting self-compatible selections.
6. Disseminate information to the industry and scientific community via the Plum and Cherry Clubs, publications and open days and transfer breeding lines to the industry for trial and subsequent release.
Project Documents
• Final Report : final report   (79k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2000

To: 2003

Cost: £325,158
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Horticulture Research International
Biotech-non GM              
Fields of Study